Ovide Lamontagne ran for governor in 1996. He lost that year to Jeanne Shaheen.
In 2010, the Manchester attorney attempted to win a U.S. Senate seat, but lost the GOP nomination to Kelly Ayotte.
This morning, at the annual Bedford GOP breakfast at the , Lamontagne, with his wife, Bettie, at his side, announced his intent to once again run for governor in front of hundreds of local Republicans, including Ayotte.
"I certainly got to know Ovide, we had many debates during our primary, and I have respect for him and think he'll be a strong candidate for governor," said Ayotte. "With Gov. (John) Lynch retiring, this is an opportunity to go forward and preserve the New Hampshire advantage. Ovide is a lifelong resident of this state. He cares deeply about the people of New Hampshire."
The revelation ends months of speculation and makes Lamontagne the first potential gubernatorial candidate to make his run official.
"We need to reform state government," he said. "This legislature has done such a great job with the numbers, but there is so much to do to modernize our systems, and we can do that together."
"I have known this individual for so long, and he is the real deal," said Bedford GOP Chairman Bill Van Anglen. "He's a man of integrity, he's a man of honesty. He's a principle individual."
House Majority Leader D.J. Bettencourt, R-Salem, was quick to announce his support of Lamontagne, in a statement released Monday afternoon.
Following the announcement, Colm O’Comartun, the executive director of the Democratic Governors Association, released the following statement:
“Ovide Lamontagne is a perennial candidate who marches in lockstep with the extremist, Tea Party Republicans in Concord. He offers New Hampshire voters a guarantee that they will have no check on a state legislature that abolished the minimum wage, made the largest percentage cut to public education funding in the nation, and pushed to implement a controversial right-to-work law. New Hampshire voters are looking for an effective and responsible leader to continue Governor Lynch’s legacy and that is not Ovide Lamontagne.”
For more information, visit Lamontagne's official campaign Web site: http://friendsofovide2012.com.