Gov. Doug Burgum (R-ND) declared he is running for president Wednesday morning, marking the third candidate in the past 24 hours to enter an already deep Republican primary field.
Burgum’s announcement came in a Wall Street Journal op-ed, where he was critical about the lack of “economic vision” in President Joe Biden’s campaign announcement video.
“We need a change in the White House. We need a new leader for a changing economy. That’s why I’m announcing my run for president today,” added Burgum, who is also hosting his launch event on Wednesday.
— Bailey Hurley (@BaileyHurleyVNL) June 7, 2023
Before winning North Dakota’s governorship in 2016 and reelection in 2020, Burgum was a venture capitalist and tech executive. He invested early in Great Plains Software when it was a start-up company and went on to serve as its chief executive. After the company sold to Microsoft in 2001 for more than a billion dollars, he headed up Microsoft Business Solutions for several years, the Forum News Service previously reported.
Notably, Microsoft Founder Bill Gates contributed more than six figures to Burgum’s 2016 campaign, according to the outlet. That year he also scored the endorsement of CEO Satya Nadella, who had previously worked under Bergum.
In his op-ed, Burgum laid out an economic-centered vision that backs boosting domestic energy production and turns to innovation rather than regulation:
When we empower American innovation and energy production, we strengthen the value of the dollar, stop China and Iran, and prevent wars such as Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. We need to embrace innovation over regulation to solve the challenges of the 21st century. We need to return power to the states. Together, we can ensure unlimited opportunity for everyone willing to reach for it.
Burgum also zoned in on national security, noting that “our enemies aren’t our neighbors down the street” but “countries that want to see our way of life destroyed.”
He added that Great Plains Software was a victim of China’s notorious intellectual property theft.
“The first time I ever saw Great Plains’ software in China in 1989, it had been stolen and pirated to sell for a tiny fraction of our price,” he added.
Burgum’s announcement coincides with former President Mike Pence’s entrance into the primary field on Wednesday morning and follows former Gov. Chris Christie’s (R-NJ) announcement on Tuesday night. The three candidates join a field currently headlined by former President Donald Trump and Gov. Ron DeSantis (R-FL), who have performed the best in the polls.
Former Gov. Nikki Haley (R-SC), entrepreneur Vivek Ramaswamy, former Gov. Asa Hutchinson (R-AR), conservative radio host Larry Elder, Sen. Tim Scott (R-SC), and businessman Perry Johnson round out the rest of the field.
Today, America’s facing new challenges, and how we respond will define our future. We need a new leader for our changing economy.
As Governor of North Dakota, Doug Burgum has cut red tape, balanced the budget, and passed the largest tax cuts in state history – and now he’s ready… pic.twitter.com/0HK5WRTft2
— Doug Burgum (@DougBurgum) June 7, 2023