Michigan 11th Congressional District Rep. Thaddeus McCotter, R-Livonia, is expected to formally throw his hat into the ring for the 2012 presidential campaign. His announcement is scheduled for about 8 p.m. today during a Tea-Party-infused Freedom Festival at Whitmore Lake, sponsored by conservative talk radio station WAAM-AM.
The Livonia native's impending bid for the White House puts McCotter, 45, into a crowded field. Other Republican candidates (so far) include:
- Former speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives Newt Gingrich of Georgia.
- Businessman Hermain Cain of Georgia.
- U.S. Rep. Ron Paul, M.D., of Texas.
- Tim Pawlenty, former Minnesota governor.
- U.S. Rep. Michelle Bachmann, Minnesota.
- Mitt Romney, former Massachusetts governor and son of a former Michigan Gov. George Romney.
- Gary Johnson, former New Mexico governor.
- Rick Santorum, former U.S. Senator from Pennsylvania.
- Jon Huntsman, former U.S. ambassador to China.
- Former vice presidential candidate and former governor of Alaska Sarah Palin has not yet said whether she will join the fray.
Here are five things you should know about McCotter:
1. Born: Livonia, Aug. 22, 1965.
2. Education: Detroit Central Catholic High School, Redford, 1983; B.A., University of Detroit, 1987; followed by a law degree from University of Detroit, 1990.
3. Employment: Private practice lawyer; Wayne County commissioner, 1992-1998; Michigan Senator, 1998-2002; U.S. House of Representatives, Michigan's 11th Congressional District, January, 2003 to present.
4. Family: Married to Rita McCotter, a registered nurse. The couple has three children, George, Timothy, and Emilia.
5. The Guitar: McCotter plays red-white-and-blue Stratocaster guitar, featured prominently on his official Twitter account. The congressman Twitter biography says he's "Financial Services Committee member; U.S. Rep. Collin Peterson's erstwhile guitar player; & ugly sweater maven."