Romney enters White House 2012 race
Stratham - Republican hopeful Mitt Romney officially entered the 2012 White House race on Thursday, urging a radical change of economic course and accusing President Barack Obama of failing America.
The 64-year-old former Massachusetts governor made his announcement at a farm in the state of New Hampshire, one of the first to vote for its candidates and which will be crucial to his hopes of winning next year's Republican Party nomination.
"Barack Obama has failed America," he told supporters. "When he took office, the economy was in recession, and he made it worse, and he made it last longer.
"It breaks my heart to see what's happening to this great country... Mr President, you've had your chance," he said.
"President Obama's European answers are not the solution to America's challenges and, in the campaign to come, the American ideals of economic freedom and opportunity need a clear and unapologetic defense and I intend to make it because I have lived it."
Romney, who lost out to Senator John McCain for the 2008 Republican nomination, has benefited from strong name recognition to lead many early opinion polls this time around, but the race is still seen as wide open.
Obama has already announced that he plans to seek re-election.