Former HP CEO Carly Fiorina ‘Very Close’ to Deciding on Presidential Run

Carly Fiorina, the former Hewlett-Packard (NYSE:HPQ) CEO and a possible 2016 presidential candidate, said Thursday she is nearing a decision on whether she will seek the GOP nomination.

“I am very close to making a final decision,” Fiorina told FOX Business Network’s Maria Bartiromo on Opening Bell. The one-time AT&T (NYSE:T) executive added that if she chooses to run, she will “bring something different” to a “broad, qualified field” on the GOP side.

Republican Sens. Ted Cruz and Rand Paul are the only two nominees to officially jump into the ring so far, while former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush has formed an exploratory committee.

“This election is about possibilities. Can we restore possibilities to every American, regardless of their circumstances?” Fiorina said on Opening Bell.

Fiorina emerged on the political scene as California’s Republican nominee for the U.S. Senate in 2010. She lost the race to incumbent Sen. Barbara Boxer, a Democrat.

During an interview on Fox News Sunday last month, Fiorina said there is a “higher than 90% chance” that she runs for the GOP nomination for president. She added that an announcement would likely come in late April or early May.

Fiorina, who served as H-P’s CEO from 1999 to 2005, has also been rumored to be a potential vice presidential pick for the eventual Republican nominee. In 2008, Fiorina served as an advisor to Sen. John McCain’s (R-Ariz.) campaign and was considered a darkhorse candidate for vice president at the time.

On Opening Bell, Fiorina also weighed in on California’s mandatory water restrictions ordered by Gov. Jerry Brown amid a severe drought. Under the new rules, the state’s overall water usage must be cut by 25% compared to 2013 levels.

“It’s the result of politics, and it’s destroying lives and livelihood,” Fiorina said of the drought.

Fiorina criticized environmental regulations that have diverted water away from farmers and into the San Francisco Bay to protect the Delta smelt, an endangered fish. From 2009 to 2010, California pumped 300 billion gallons of water into the bay.

Farmers unsuccessfully fought the regulations in court. Early this year, the Supreme Court declined to take the case after an appeals court ruled in favor of protecting the Delta smelt.

“The key word is balance,” Fiorina said when asked about environmental regulations. “We have to balance conservation and the need for jobs, livelihood and economic growth.”

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