Former White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders announced Monday that she is running for the Republican nomination to be the next governor of Arkansas.
Her father, former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee, was the state’s governor from 1996 to 2007.
Sanders announced her candidacy in a video uploaded to Twitter, in which she recalled former President Donald Trump’s Christmas 2018 visit to U.S. troops in Iraq, and the dedication and devotion of the soldiers they met there.
Sanders applauded the bravery of America’s servicemen and women who protect citizens from foreign threats, but said that the U.S. today faces a much different kind of threat.
“America is great because we are free, but today our freedom and the rule of law are under attack,” she said.
Sanders noted that she is no stranger to standing up to those who don’t agree with her beliefs.
I’m in —> https://t.co/8bmfl3ZPgp
Watch ⬇️ pic.twitter.com/khDPEk0orU
— Sarah Huckabee Sanders (@SarahHuckabee) January 25, 2021
“I was the first White House press secretary to require Secret Service protection because of a credible, violent threat against me,” she said. “We’ve seen violence in our streets, at a congressional baseball practice and at our Capitol. This is not who we are as Americans. To remain free, we must have law and order and resolve our differences peacefully.”
She said America must fight back against those who want to eliminate freedom.
“The radical left’s solution is to impose government control and censorship from the top down, but their socialism and cancel culture will not heal America,” she said. “It will only further divide and destroy us.”
As the federal government lurches to the left, Sanders continued, state leaders are now a bulwark protecting their citizens.
“Everything we love about America is at stake and with the radical left now in control of Washington, your governor is your last line of defense. In fact, your governor must be on the front line, so today I announce my candidacy for governor of Arkansas and ask for your prayers and your support,” she said.
Sanders outlined core principles that mark her political line in the sand.
“As governor, I will defend your right to be free of socialism and tyranny, your Second Amendment right to keep your family safe and your freedom of speech and religious liberty,” Sanders said. “Our state needs a leader with the courage to do what’s right, not what’s politically correct or convenient.”
Although she has no history of elective office, Sanders said she has emerged a winner in the crisis-scarred times in which she was at the White House.
“I took on the media, the radical left and their cancel culture, and I won. As governor, I will be your voice and never let them silence you.”
“My dad always said the real test of a leader is not the way you handle the issues you know are coming — it’s rising to the moment in a crisis you could never plan for. I’ve been tested under fire.”
Sanders said barriers mean nothing to her.
“I was only the third woman and the first mom to serve as White House press secretary. And with your support, I hope to be the first woman to lead our state as governor,” she said.
Noting her deep connections with the state, Sanders vowed to “stand with our brave law enforcement officers, promote law and order and keep our communities safe.”
Sanders said radical left policies will not infiltrate Arkansas on her watch.
“I will prohibit sanctuary cities and cut off funding for cities that deliberately violate immigration laws. I will fight back against the radical environmental policies, like the Green New Deal, that threaten to destroy so many jobs. I will take on the bureaucracy, reduce the cost and size of government and make it accountable to you,” she said.
She also called for a lower state income tax and promised to support both existing schools and the right of parents to choose where they send their children to school.
Sanders said she has no fear as she begins her run for office.
“My opponents are already turning their fire on me,” she said.
“But here’s the truth: As White House press secretary, I never had to worry about the far left and their allies at CNN or The New York Times defining me, because I have a Creator who’s already done that. I’m a Christian, a wife, a mom, a proud Arkansan.”
“My opponents will do everything in their power to destroy me, but I will not apologize for who I am or who I am fighting for. I’m fighting for you. I will not retreat, I will not surrender and I will not bow down to the radical left — not now, not ever.”
According to Politico, Sanders will compete against Arkansas Lt. Gov. Tim Griffin and Attorney General Leslie Rutledge in the state’s GOP primary.
When announcing Sanders’ departure from the White House in 2019, Trump previously tweeted, “I hope she decides to run for Governor of Arkansas — she would be fantastic.”
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