WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The U.S. ambassador to
China, Jon Huntsman, plans to resign soon, a White House
official said Monday, as he prepares for a potential
campaign for the Republican presidential nomination in 2012.
Huntsman, a former governor of Utah, would join what is
expected to be a large field of Republicans seeking the
nomination to challenge Democratic President Barack Obama in
Huntsman has been Obama's China envoy for the past two
years and if he runs he would likely face questions from
conservative Republican voters as to why he worked for Obama.
The Washington Post reported that at Saturday night's
Alfalfa Club dinner, an annual VIP event, White House chief of
staff Bill Daley jokingly referred to Huntsman as "the
Obama made light of a potential Huntsman run when asked
about it Jan. 19 at a joint news conference with visiting
Chinese President Hu Jintao.
"I'm sure the fact that him having worked so well with me
will be a great asset in any Republican primary," Obama
(Reporting by Steve Holland; Editing by Doina Chiacu)
© 2013 Thomson/Reuters. All rights reserved.