MANCHESTER, NH -- You can add another prominent Republican who’s thinking about a White House bid.
“I am definitely considering a run for president,” former New York Gov. George Pataki told reporters here.
Fresh off a trip to Iowa, Pataki was in the Granite State leading a discussion on the debt crisis at the New Hampshire Institute of Politics at Saint Anselm's College. (Organizers claimed it was scheduled long before the current debt impasse began producing headlines.)
"We are engaged in generational theft. Politicians in Washington are stealing from our children's future… This is not leadership,” Pataki told the group.
When asked about the current GOP presidential field's handling of the debt problem, Pataki seemed dissatisfied.
"A Republican has to make as part of their campaign how they're going deal with the deficit and debt issue,” he told NBC News. “We have to have solutions. So far, I haven’t heard that. I'm certainly looking to see if someone has that plan in the tone of their campaign.”
Then Pataki paused to reiterate that he is taking a closer look at the White House. “I’m seriously thinking about it."
Here in New Hampshire, Pataki is the honorary chairman of a group called No American Debt, which hosted today’s event. He joined state Senate President Peter Bragdon and House Speaker Bill O’Brien to answer questions from approximately 20 concerned citizens, business leaders, and one college student.
Pataki wasted no time in attacking President Obama’s positions on a broad range of issues including energy, jobs, taxes, and the subject du jour: the debt debate.
As for when he might declare a run for the White House, Pataki knows the clock is ticking.
"I don’t want to put a specific date on it, but I understand that sooner is better than not.”
Pataki said it would “be great” if Texas Gov. Rick Perry entered the presidential race, but he stated firmly that Perry’s move would not ultimately affect his own decision.
“I will be very involved in some way, whether it's as a candidate or supporting another candidate or some other capacity."