The Buzz

Carly Fiorina for President: What You Need to Know

Ten. That’s the number of successive presidents who have come to the White House having previously held elective office. Carly Fiorina hopes to break that string. The former CEO of Hewlett-Packard announced today that she is running for president. If she wins, she would join an elite club. Just six U.S. presidents have won the presidency without first having held some other elective office: George WashingtonZachary Taylor,Ulysses S. GrantWilliam Howard TaftHerbert Hoover, and Dwight D. Eisenhower. Of course, if Fiorina wins in November 2016, she would hold another, more obvious distinction. She would be the first woman elected president of the United States. She would also be the first breast cancer survivor to occupy the presidency.

Name: Carly Fiorina
Date of Birth: September 6, 1954
Place of Birth: Austin, TX
Religion: Christian
Political Party: Republican Party
Marital Status: Frank Fiorina
Children: Two stepdaughters
Alma Mater: Stanford University (BA in Medieval History and Philosophy); University of Maryland (MBA); Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MS)
Career: CEO, Hewlett Packard (1999-2005)
Twitter Handle@CarlyFiorina

Campaign Announcement

Fiorina announced her bid for the White House in a thoroughly twenty-first century way: she changed her Facebook profile to read, “Carly for President.” She followed that up with a tweet declaring her candidacy.

Her slogan is “New Possibilities. Real Leadership.”

Fiorina’s Story

Fiona has run for public office once before. She challenged California’s incumbent DemocraticSenator Barbara Boxer back in 2010. Fiorina lost, and it wasn’t close.

Fiorina says she is the best GOP candidate to oppose Hillary Clinton because she can prevent the former secretary of state from “play[ing] the gender card.” Fiorina knows something about breaking glass ceilings even if she once said that “the glass ceiling doesn’t exist.” She was the first female CEO of Hewlett-Packard—then the eleventh largest company in the United States— and the first woman to run a Fortune 100 company.

Fiorina touts her extensive experience in business rather than government as a strength rather than a weakness. Her critics—and they are by no means all Democrats— take a less generous view of her corporate career. Her tenure at HP was tumultuous, with some critics going as far as to call it “disastrous” and noting that she was fired as CEO. Even if these criticisms overstate things, the Boxer campaign had great success back in 2010 blaming Fiorina for laying off 30,000 workers and shipping good American jobs overseas. That potential vulnerability will not be lost on her rivals if her campaign gains traction.

Foreign Policy Views