Former Assistant Treasury Secretary Neel Kashkari announced Tuesday he will run in this year's California governor's race against Democratic Gov. Jerry Brown.
Kashkari, a Republican Bush appointee, was instrumental in crafting and implementing the $700 billion bank bailout in the wake of the 2008 financial crisis. The bailout ultimately made the government a $13 billion profit.
He left office in 2009 to go to work for bond giant Pimco, where he worked until 2013.
The campaign's new website touts Kashkari as a centrist “pragmatic leader who has successfully worked with Republicans and Democrats to tackle the most serious economic challenges America has faced.”
“Today, the gift of a good education and the doors of opportunity it opens are out of reach for millions of struggling Californians. That’s why I’m running for governor: To create jobs and give kids a quality education. Jobs and education. That’s it. That’s my platform,” Kashkari, 40, announced on his blog.
Although Kashkari has never held elected office, the Republican Governors Association quickly welcomed him to the race.
“It's time to end @JerryBrownGov's tax-and-spend games,” the RGA tweeted.
Brown has been heavily favored to win reelection in the deep blue state of California, although he has not officially announced his candidacy.
Also running as a Republican in the race is Assemblyman Tim Donnelly, a Tea Party conservative.