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Republican Newt Gingrich Launches Bid For President

Former speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives Newt Gingrich
Republican Newt Gingrich, the former leader of the House of Representatives, has announced he will run for president in 2012.

Gingrich made the announcement on May 11 on social networking websites.

The 67-year-old Gingrich is the best known Republican candidate who has formally announced his 2012 bid for the White House.

Other likely Republican candidates include former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney, former Alaska governor Sarah Palin and multibillionaire Donald Trump.

In 1994, Gingrich led Republicans to their first majority in the House of Representatives in four decades and then served four years as speaker, as the House leader is known.

He resigned from the House in 1999 after facing ethics complaints.

Democratic President Barack Obama formally announced his reelection campaign for 2012 last month.

compiled from agency reports