Jon Huntsman Jr. is our own Dr. Carlisle Cullen

When two separate events occur simultaneously pertaining to the same object of inquiry, we must always pay strict attention, FBI Special Agent Dale Cooper advises. So for a minute there, watching the most elegant and handsome Jon Huntsman Jr. announce his candidacy, it was like that deja vu thing all over again Yogi Berra told us about. I thought I was back in the movie theater with my 13-year-old daughter watching “Twilight.” Out of the mystery and danger; out of chaos, bloodlust and barbarism, comes the handsome, young, dependable and strong father figure, Dr. Carlisle Cullen, who brings us back to order and looks just like Huntsman.

A stunning figure, Huntsman/Cullen, but not really one of us. One who was one of us, but evolved beyond his bestial nature to a higher form, a celestial one, but one who was led back to us by compassion; back to us who are still driven by the beast, come to us now to help us along, to guide us, to cure us. That is Carlisle, the Cullen patriarch and bodhisattva, and that might well describe Joseph Smith, who led a small group out of the utter moral and spiritual confusion of 1830s Vermont, to a structured new enlightenment in the desert of Utah. And now, Huntsman comes out of exile back to us.

Huntsman is a picture-perfect candidate and could well play Dr. Carlisle Cullen, patriarch of the “good” vampires in the “Twilight” saga, and maybe for the first time since the post-war saga began we can freely say that populism has failed us and has failed the world. Huntsman/Cullen is not “one of us.” He is better than us. And now, here because we need him, because if we continue along the populist path we will not only fail — we have already failed; no, this time we will fall apart. But maybe Jon Huntsman Jr. can save us.

It is serendipitous that the movie version of the fourth and final book in the “Twilight” series, Breaking Dawn, which sold 1.3 million in the first 24 hours, will be released on Nov. 18, 2011, when the campaign is in full swing. Because the connection between Huntsman and Dr. Carlisle Cullen can be mesmerizing.

It is widely suggested that the high-minded “Twilight” Cullens are really Mormons. Like the Cullens, Mormons are intelligent, committed, family-based, moral, organized and compassionate. Like the Cullens, they have possibly found their own higher path ahead of those of us who have not yet conquered the beast. Maybe that is why so many claim to dislike them.