From the Politico,
The Politico-Obama’s decision leaves the GOP without an obvious centrist presidential candidate.
President Barack Obama’s decision to appoint Utah Gov. Jon Huntsman as ambassador to China Saturday doesn’t merely remove a likely challenger – it strips the Republican party of one of its few voices urging moderation. read more...
This analysis is a little perplexing. First off, 2012 is a ways off, and it is far to early to say that this removes Huntsman from the field of candidates. If it was 2010 and he received and accepted the appointment I might consider this idea to have a leg to stand on.
In the early 70's then President Gerald Ford appointed George H. W. Bush to be Chief of the US Liaison Office to the People's Republic of China. Bush did not officially hold the position of "ambassador," however he did perform all of the duties required of one. Bush only held the position for 14 months.
Huntsman previously served as a Mormon missionary in Taiwan and is also fluent in Mandarin Chinese. If he is successful there is a chance for Huntsman to use this situation to his advantage. He can easily claim to have a better understanding about the inner workings of one of America's greatest worries and rivals, China. Thereby giving him a leg up on any GOP or Democratic competition in upcoming elections for POTUS.
Although temporarily removed from the equation, it might just to be a little premature to count Huntsman out for a 2012 election run.
Michelle Malkin-Reports: Utah GOP Gov. Huntsman to resign, become Obama’s China ambassador
WizBang-Republican Utah Governor Jon Huntsman to be Named US Ambassador to China
Jammie Wearing Fool-Huntsman Named Ambassador to China