TV personality Huckabee running for US president

2015-05-05 18:26
(Danny Johnston, AP)

(Danny Johnston, AP)

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Washington - Mike Huckabee, a former governor of the southern US state of Arkansas and a conservative television personality, said on Tuesday he would seek the Republican nomination for president in 2016.

"We were promised hope, but it was just talk and now we really need the kind of change that really could get America from hope to higher ground," Huckabee declared at a campaign rally in his hometown of Hope, Arkansas, denouncing the direction President Barack Obama had led the United States.

Huckabee is seeking the nomination for the second time, having won the first contest of the 2008 intraparty primaries with a victory in the Iowa caucuses. He ultimately finished second in the count of delegates to the party convention, behind the party's eventual candidate, John McCain.

He served two terms as governor of Arkansas, between 1996 and 2007, taking the office held just a few years earlier by Democratic president Bill Clinton.

After falling short in his 2008 presidential bid, Huckabee hosted a popular television talk show on Fox News.

A recent Gallup poll found he was the most well-known of the potential Republican candidates, along with former Florida governor Jeb Bush.

Huckabee, a former Baptist preacher, is seen as a favourite of social conservatives and faces a crowded field of challengers. Former HP executive Carly Fiorina and retired neurosurgeon Ben Carson announced on Monday that they would seek the centre-right party's nomination for the 2016 election.

Three first-term US senators - Ted Cruz, Rand Paul and Marco Rubio - are also seeking the nomination. Several prominent likely candidates, including Bush, are expected to announce their candidacies in the coming weeks.

On the Democratic side, former secretary of state Hillary Clinton is the clear party favourite. So far, she faces just one challenger - Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders, a self-declared socialist.

Read more on:    us  |  us 2016 elections

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