China Envoy Huntsman May Run for President in 2012 or 2016, Brother Says

U.S. Ambassador to China Jon Huntsman is interested in running for president in 2012 or 2016, his brother Peter Huntsman said.

Jon Huntsman, a Republican who resigned during his second term as governor of Utah to accept President Barack Obama’s diplomatic appointment, may sit out the next presidential election cycle, Peter Huntsman said yesterday in an interview in San Antonio. Peter Huntsman said he’s as close to his brother Jon “as anyone except his wife.”

Jon Huntsman, 51, who speaks Mandarin Chinese, resigned from his ambassadorship in January, effective April 30, fueling speculation he will run for president.

“There is a real need in this country for a politician who can have a focus on economic progress and economic development and deficit reduction,” said Peter Huntsman, chief executive officer of Huntsman Corp. (HUN) , the Salt Lake City-based chemicals company their father founded.

“He is interested at some point” in running for president, he said. “That’s not necessarily in 2012.”

Peter Huntsman, 48, said he voted for Obama and is rooting for the president to succeed. Still, Jon would make “an attractive candidate,” he said.

Their father, Jon Meade Huntsman Sr., is chairman of Huntsman Corp.

To contact the reporter on this story: Jack Kaskey at in Houston or jkaskey@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Simon Casey at scasey4@bloomberg.net

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