WASHINGTON (SINCLAIR BROADCAST GROUP) – Former Virginia Gov. Jim Gilmore formally announced his bid for the White House in 10-minute video, marking the beginning of a long-shot campaign based on a message of tax cuts and limiting the reach of government.
« I’m Jim Gilmore and today I’m announcing my candidacy for the Republican nomination for president of the United States, » he starts in the video. « With so many candidates already in the race, some may ask why am I running? That’s a fair question and deserves a straight answer. »
Gilmore said he can « reverse the decline » of the country seen under the current Washington leadership.
He criticized the policies of President Barack Obama and his « hand-picked successor » former Secretary of State and Democratic front-runner Hillary Clinton.
Gilmore, a former U.S. Army intelligence officer, promoted a « peace through strength » foreign policy.
« Unfortunately the actions and the lack of actions under the Obama-Clinton administration have put us exactly in the position » of weakness in foreign standing, » said Gilmore.
He said the world has become « more dangerous » because of Obama’s and Clinton’s foreign policy.
Gilmore slammed the administration for cutting defense spending recent policy decisions including the nuclear non-proliferation agreement with Iran.
He went on to say national security can be strengthened through strong economic growth.
To support a stronger economy, Gilmore proposed his « Growth Code » which includes a 15 percent tax rate on business, three tax brackets and an elimination of the death tax.
He also pushed the common conservative effort to limit the federal government and promoted deregulation and protection of second amendment rights.
Gilmore, like many of his fellow candidates, framed himself as a Washington outsider coming into to fix the problems in the country while pointing out the influence and political dynasty of his opponents.
« I’m not a billionaire, the son of a former president or a member of the Washington establishment. » he said, taking a swipe at the GOP front-runners Donald Trump and former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush.
Gilmore filed his statement of candidacy papers Thursday with the Federal Election Commission under the committee Gilmore for America LLC, making him the 17th major candidate to enter the Republican field for the 2016 race.
By Aileen Graef