Republican businessman Charlie Baker announced Wednesday that he will run for governor of Massachusetts in 2014, marking the second straight election he will make a bid for the state's top job.
In a two-minute web video, Baker pitches himself as a family man who can work with Democrats and has a proven record as a former state secretary of administration and finance and CEO of a health-care organization.
"I care about this great state and the wonderful people who make it strong and call it home," Baker says in the video.
Baker lost to Gov. Deval Patrick (D) by about 6 percentage points in 2010. He will begin as the early front-runner for the Republican nomination in 2014. As the Boston Globe points out, the tone Baker is trying to strike this cycle is softer than what he was aiming for in 2010, when he sought to tap into voter anger.
Speculation has swirled for months that Baker might run again. The odds that he would jump in increased last month when former senator Scott Brown took himself out of the running, and said he would back Baker.
On the Democratic side of the open seat race, two Obama administration officials are running: Former Boston Globe columnist and homeland security official Juliette Kayyem, and former administrator for the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services Donald Berwick. State Treasurer Steven Grossman, state Sen. Daniel Wolf, and biotech executive and physician Joseph Avellone are also in the race.
State Attorney General Martha Coakley, the Democrat who lost to Brown in 2010 but remains popular in the Bay State, may also pursue the Democratic nomination.