(ATLANTA) -- Just hours before he is scheduled to hold a news conference to discuss his presidential ambitions, former House Speaker Newt Gingrich confirmed that he would take the first steps toward a campaign on Thursday. He told Georgia talk radio host Martha Zoller Thursday morning that he would be launching a website to kick off the exploratory phase of his bid for the 2012 Republican nomination that will go live Thursday.
"[Gingrich's wife] Callista and I are prepared to see if there are enough folks who want to get this country back on the right track," he said on the radio show. “It's a great challenge but it's one that we both take very, very seriously, both as citizens and behalf of our grand children and all the young people of America."
At an event Thursday afternoon with Georgia Gov. Nathan Deal, Gingrich intends make it clear that he is exploring a presidential run. He plans to start raising money more aggressively and moving in the direction of a formal exploratory committee and, as many expect, an official announcement of his candidacy.
"Callista and I promised, as you know, for well over a year that we would make a decision in late February or early March and we have kept our promise," Gingrich told Zoller. "We will have a website up later on today, people can go to it. It's newtexplore2012.com and it's an effort to reach out to folks and say if we really want to get back to being a country of American exceptionalism and we really want to create jobs competing with Germany and China and India, and we really want to shrink government, get power out of Washington, balance the federal budget, and we really want to have a stronger national and homeland security so we're safer. Lots of folks are going to have to decide if that's a project they want to be engaged in."
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