Illustration: Mark Marturello/The Des Moines Register
BORN: September 6, 1954, in Austin, Texas
What she’s got: High-level executive and management experience from her tenure as head honcho of Hewlett-Packard; private-sector bona fides bolstering her economic message; compelling secretary-to-CEO professional biography; history as a breast cancer survivor, which marks her as tough and relatable to many women; all but certain status as the only female in the GOP field, which allows her both to stand out and to cudgel Hillary Clinton in ways that might seem sexist coming from any non-female rival.
What she lacks: National name recognition; a significant record of public service; a winning record in electoral politics; policy chops on any topic unrelated to job creation and regulation (and substantive detail on those); convincing answers to questions about her ouster from HP; a clear and plausible early-state strategy.
Mark Halperin: Carly Fiorina Is The Most Improved Candidate
Mark Halperin and John Heilemann question why despite Carly Fiorina’s strong announcement for the Republican presidential nomination she hasn’t mentioned a single specific idea in her campaign.
“Politics is a facts-free zone.”
“They’re not entrepreneurial. They don’t innovate—that’s why they’re stealing our intellectual property.”
“Oh Katie, would you ask a male candidate that question?”
“I was fired in a boardroom brawl.”
“I think leadership of any kind requires trust and transparency and voters should demand no less from their political leadership in government.”
Fiorina is a breast cancer survivor.
Traci Fiorina, Stepdaughter
Lori Ann Fiorina, Stepdaughter (1974-2009)
Madelon Sneed, Mother
Joseph Sneed, Father