U.S. Ambassador to Russia Jon Huntsman Jr. has submitted his resignation, signaling the end of a two-year stint. Huntsman is planning to return to Utah amid speculation that he may again run for governor.
Huntsman, a Republican, left the Utah governor’s office in 2009, when former President Barack Obama tapped him as ambassador to China. He mounted a brief run for president in 2011. In 2017, President Donald Trump named him as ambassador to Russia, just as the U.S. investigated Moscow’s meddling in the 2016 election.
In a resignation letter, Huntsman said he was honored by the trust Trump placed in him “during this historically difficult period in bilateral relations” that has included expulsions and forced departures of his staff. In the letter, Huntsman also urged the U.S. to hold Russia accountable for behavior that threatens American allies. He said he wants to leave to reconnect with family and home responsibilities.
Huntsman is expected to serve through October 3.