Fiorina, the only woman seeking the Republican nomination, stressed her political outsider credentials when she announced she was running for president on May 4. Criticizing the “professional political class,” Fiorina said, “It’s time for us to empower our citizens, to give them a voice in our government, to come together to fix what has been broken about our government and politics for too long.” She proposes to rein in the federal debt with zero-base budgeting and shrinking federal employment by not replacing retiring workers. She would simplify the tax code and reduce federal regulation. Fiorina opposes abortion, would defund Planned Parenthood and is for gun rights. She said she would secure the border. Her first two acts would be to reassure Israel of U.S. support and to tell Iran she wants to renegotiate the nuclear deal.
Fiorina, 61, a Republican, is a former corporate CEO and was an unsuccessful candidate for U.S. Senate from California in 2010. Fiorina rose from an AT&T management trainee in 1980 to become the company’s first female executive. In 1999, she became CEO of Hewlett-Packard and acquired computer manufacturer Compaq, resulting in the layoff of 30,000 U.S. employees. HP’s board of directors forced her out as CEO in 2005. The daughter of a law professor and an abstract painter, Fiorina earned degrees from Stanford University, the University of Maryland and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Since leaving HP, Fiorina has been a corporate board member, TV commentator, adviser to John McCain’s 2008 presidential campaign and Senate candidate. Fiorina is a breast cancer survivor. She is married to Frank Fiorina and has a stepdaughter.