The location of the announcement was obviously well-planned. The iconic Liberty Island loomed in the background of New York Harbor, signaling the start of a would-be historic campaign. Regardless of its ultimate success, the site was an upgraded campaign platform over the eminently forgettable farms of New Hampshire.
The speech itself hit all the right notes, cutting a broad swath of economic issues, ranging from manufacturing, to trade, to jobs. It also addressed the growing unease with the American political process itself, stressing the need for civility in public discourse. Most importantly, Gov. Huntsman's speech framed an optimistic vision for blunting the tide of American decline, and the delivery was earnest.
As a technophile, the thing that impressed me most (aside from substance), was the speech's on-line rollout. Huntsman deftly released a series of teaser videos (see here, here, here, and here) a full six days before the announcement, and then carried the speech from the Statute of Liberty streaming live online, with a bevy of Twitter and Facebook links to get people immersed in the campaign's social media.
Below is the video from the event, as released by the campaign, literally, within minutes of the speech's conclusion.
In all, not a bad launch.