Conservative retired neurosurgeon Ben Carson says he is thinking about running as a Republican candidate for the White House in 2016. The political newcomer has created a committee that will help him raise funds.
Carson announced on social media on Tuesday that he had created an "presidential exploratory committee," allowing him to begin raising money for a potential presidential campaign.
The retired neurosurgeon is new to politics, but emerged as a powerful conservative voice in recent years after publicly criticizing President Barack Obama's health care law in 2013. His declaration of a potential presidential run comes after former Florida Governor Jeb Bush made a similar announcement in December.
"If I believe that I have your support and your commitment to help, I will run for President to lead this great country to a brighter future," Carson wrote on Facebook.
"I will use these next few months to listen to you and prepare to answer that question myself. I look forward to traveling across this mighty nation to listen to your thoughts and ideas."
It's understood more than a dozen Republicans are considering campaigns. If he decides to run, Bush, the respective son and brother of former US presidents George H.W. Bush and George W. Bush, would likely tap into his family's vast political network and attract strong support from donors.
Former Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney withdrew from a second run in January - reportedly after donors told him they planned to support Jeb Bush.
Obama is barred from seeking a third term, and former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton is presumed to be the Democratic frontrunner, although she has not confirmed long-running speculation she would run.
jr/jil (AP, Reuters, AFP)