Jon Huntsman can't catch a break.
The floundering presidential campaign of the former Utah governor took another hit Thursday when it fired the manager of its New Hampshire operation, Ethan Elion. A spokesman called the dismissal amicable, but the message is clear: Huntsman's effort in a state he must win is struggling.
To add insult to injury, the firing came on the same day Huntsman bluntly told to a crowd in Manchester he would win the New Hampshire primary. The statement appears overly optimistic for a candidate registering at one percent in national polls anyway, much less when it's made the same day the campaign fires a key staff member.
"I want to put you on notice," he said, according to the Associated Press. "We're going to win this state. We're going to win this primary."
It's the second day in a row the former ambassador to China has had bad timing. Wednesday, Huntsman unveiled a jobs plan that received glowing praise from some conservatives, and might have been poised to give him campaign the shot in the arm it needed.
But Huntsman's rollout was nearly rendered invisible by drama surrounding President Obama's decision, later changed, to address a joint session of Congress on Sept. 7, the same day as a Republican presidential debate. Instead of a debate about his effort to scale back taxes and regulation, most pundits forces on the unfolding drama between the president and House Speaker John Boehner.
If Huntsman wants to win New Hampshire, he'll need a better campaign. But he also might need better luck.