Readers likely recall Huntsman as being the “too liberal” GOP candidate back in 2012. So, on the one hand, I have to wonder how much his past association with the Obama administration (he was ambassador to China from 2009-2011) and the negative feedback he received colors his approach to party politics. On the other, he is in the position that a lot of Republicans are going to find themselves over the next several months: do they stick with the GOP if Trump is the nominee, do they defect to the Democrats, or do they sit out the election? Unless an independent candidate/new third party movement arises, there aren’t going to be any other options.
This allows me to take the opportunity to note that part of the problem is our electoral system. If we had a popular vote system that required an absolute majority of the vote to win the office (i.e., 50%+1) using either a run-off or instant run-off, there would be a far greater incentives for a third party to emerge.