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Roemer Runs: Former La. Gov Kicks off Presidential Campaign in...NH
by Ben de la Cour
Former Louisiana governor, video poker enthusiast and Democrat-turned- Republican, Buddy Roemer, formally announced his presidential bid today. The speech was not choreographed as a down payment on the Kingfish's dream, as it was held not in Nachitoches, but New Hampshire's Dartmouth College.
A native of Shreveport, Roemer graduated from Harvard in 1964 and a went on to serve four terms in Congress as a Democrat. As governor in the 1980s, he addressed many environmental issues affecting Louisiana, as well as drastically reducing unemployment and working to increase pay for teachers. Having beat Edwin Edwards after EWE survived an indictment, Roemer has for a long time been vocal about the corrupting influence of money on politics.
“Today, I run for President of the United States," he said. "I run to reveal the control of special interests in Washington and to demonstrate that the freedom to lead only comes by refusing their money. I run to prepare America for job growth, beginning with the elimination of unfair trade practices and attacking the debt. I run as a proud Republican, but an even prouder American.”
What does this mean in terms of the 2012 presidential race? It's hard to tell at this point. Despite the wide open Republican field, Roemer remains an outside pick, as he has been out of politics for a good while, but his willingness to tackle special interest money, and his policy to raise money only in small contributions already makes him stand out in a crowding field. (For more on that read this Daily Beast article.)
“We must break the stranglehold of special interest money on our political system, " he said. "It’s the special interests who use unfair trade and self-written tax loopholes to make their fortunes while stealing our future”.
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