Poizner makes it official

State Insurance Commissioner Steve Poizner made official Monday what's been expected for months: He's formally exploring a run for governor in 2010. From the Sacramento Bee:

The state's only Republican statewide officeholder besides Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger said he will file paperwork today to open an exploratory committee to succeed Schwarzenegger in two years. The move is the first formal step taken to enter the race.

"I am taking the first formal step toward running for governor in 2010 because I believe in California and I understand that meeting the challenges of the 21st century requires new and innovative ideas," Poizner said in a statement.

Poizner, 51, sold a high-tech business in 2000 for $1 billion and has spent more than $24 million of his own money to launch his political career.

A socially moderate, pro-choice Republican, Poizner has gone to great lengths to woo the conservative base of the Republican Party, touting himself as a fiscal conservative.

In fact, he "announced" the exploration of his run for governor through the Web site of conservative GOP party leader Jon Fleischman, shortly before noon today.

That would be The Flash Report.

Noted from the weekend: Peter Camejo, the Green Party candidate for governor in 2002, 2003 and 2006 — and Ralph Nader's vice-presidential running mate in 2004 — died at his home in Folsom. He was 68 and had lymphoma. Bee

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