Republican Tim Pawlenty pulled no punches Monday when he formally announced his 2012 run for the White House.
The former Minnesota governor said his campaign will tell the American people the truth about the severe challenges the country is facing and explain how to get back on track.
"President Obama's policies have failed. But more than that, he won't even tell us the truth about what it's really going to take to get out of the mess we're in," Pawlenty said in prepared remarks.
"I'm going to take a different approach," he promised. "I am going to tell you the truth."
CBN News spoke with Regent University distinguished professor Charles Dunn about the 2012 presidential race and how the GOP competition is developing so far. Click play for his comments.
Pawlenty is expected to attack Obama's health care overahaul as a centerpiece of his campaign. The self-proclaimed can-do candidate will also address taxes, spending, unions, and the courts.
"Politicians are often afraid that if they're too honest, they might lose an election. I'm afraid that in 2012, if we're not honest enough, we may lose our country," Pawlenty said.
"If we want to grow our economy, we need to shrink our government," he continued. "If we want to create jobs, we need to encourage job creators."
"If we want our children to be free to pursue their dreams, we can't shackle them with our debts," Pawlenty said. "This is a time for truth."
Seeking to connect with evangelical voters, Pawlenty is also expected to talk about his Christian faith.
"If the nation turns its back on God or pushes Him out of the equation, we're going to be a much poorer nation for it," he has said.
Pawlenty took the first step to running for president in March when he set up an exploratory committee. He already has campaign offices in several states.
Conservative businessman Herman Cain also launched his presidential campaign over the weekend.
Cain is the former CEO of Godfather's Pizza and a Tea Party favorite.
Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels announced Sunday that it's in his family's best interest that he doesn't run in 2012.