Former New Mexico Governor Gary Johnson announced today that he's running for the 2012 Republican presidential nomination.[snip]
"I'm ready for a different America," Johnson said in a statement today. "I'm ready for the day when a person can build a good life on a decent income, and we can take our government at its word."
Johnson announced his candidacy Thursday morning on the steps of the New Hampshire State House and plans to spend three days in the early-nominating state meeting with supporters and visiting local businesses.
Other presumed Republican presidential candidates, including former Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty and former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, have so far only formed "exploratory committees." That means they can raise funds for parts of their 2012 campaign, though the Federal Election Commission considers such a committee different from an official campaign committee.
Johnson served as governor of New Mexico from 1995 to 2003, where he made a name for himself as a staunch libertarian. His anti-interventionist foreign policy, his support for gay rights (he has said he supports gay unions, suggesting the government shouldn't be involved in marriage at all), and his support for marijuana legalization have drawn comparisons to Republican Rep. Ron Paul, another possible 2012 presidential contender.
Gary Johnson announces presidential run - Political Hotsheet - CBS News