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Former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee Announces Presidential Run

Former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee.

Former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee announced Tuesday that he is seeking the Republican presidential nomination.

"It seems perfectly fitting that it would be here that I announce that I am a candidate for president of the United States of America," he told a crowd of supporters in his hometown of Hope, Ark., which is also Bill Clinton's hometown.

Huckabee, who previously ran for the presidency in 2008, hosted a television program on Fox News until January, when he ended the eponymous show to consider his political future.

Huckabee, an ordained Baptist minister, joins a crowded Republican field. Sens. Marco Rubio of Florida, Ted Cruz of Texas and Rand Paul of Kentucky have already announced their candidacies. On Monday, they were joined in the race by neurosurgeon Ben Carson and former Hewlett-Packard CEO Carly Fiorina. Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush and Govs. Chris Christie of New Jersey and Scott Walker of Wisconsin are also expected to join the fray, along with others.

Huckabee is in sixth place among GOP presidential hopefuls in the most recent average of polls compiled by Real Clear Politics. But all of them trail former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, the likely Democratic nominee, right now in the polls.

The former Arkansas governor came to national prominence in the run-up to the 2008 presidential election, and for a period, he was among the Republican front-runners. (The GOP nomination eventually went to Sen. John McCain.)

"His manner and appearance are reassuringly ordinary," Hendrik Hertzberg wrote in The New Yorker at the time. "When he smiles or laughs, which is often, his dimpled face looks interestingly like that of Wallace, of Wallace & Gromit."

For more on Huckabee, please see the post 5 Things You Should Know About Mike Huckabee on our It's all Politics blog.

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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