Former Hewlett Packard CEO Carly Fiorina said Thursday it’s “looking more likely” that she’ll run for president in 2016, though she acknowledged she faces challenges in the wide-open Republican presidential primary field.
In an interview on Boston Herald Radio, Fiorina said her primary concern right now is introducing herself to voters, and raising enough money to compete.
“Of course people don’t know me and they need to get to know me,” Fiorina said. “Do we need to raise money? Yes. Do we need to raise as much money as Jeb Bush? No.”
Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush’s team has telegraphed plans to raise $100 million in the first quarter of the year, an eye-popping sum intended to discourage some of his potential GOP opponents from the race. Fiorina said, however, she believes there are other ways to compete.
“Money is important, but money is not everything, and I actually think good, old-fashioned, on-the-ground, reach-out politics counts for a lot,” she said.
Her announcement late last year of her interest in the potential 2016 race surprised many political watchers, as she’s never held public office, and made just one run at it, a failed challenge to Democratic Sen. Barbara Boxer in 2010. Since announcing, she’s hired staff and is headed to New Hampshire later this month, with an announcement of her decision reportedly planned for May.
If she were to jump in the race, Fiorina could likely self-fund to some degree, as she did during her 2010 run for Senate.
In addition to her personal wealth, Fiorina’s position as the only GOP woman openly considering a bid could be an asset. She was recently labeled “the GOP’s weapon against Hillary Clinton,” the presumptive Democratic nominee, in a Forbes feature highlighting her advantages as a potential female contender.
But Fiorina said her appeal is based on more than that.
“I’m not running because I’m a woman but the fact is I am a woman … and I think it is an important part of who I am,” she said. ” “I certainly believe that all of us, men and women, are judged on our character and our accomplishments and our track records and our lives — and I look forward to those things being examined about me.”