TOPEKA, Kan., Jan. 21 (UPI) -- Sen. Sam Brownback, R-Kan., announced his presidential candidacy in his home state, using his speech to stake a conservative claim on the race.
"The last thing we need in America is to take God out of our public lives and institutions," Brownback said Saturday in Topeka. "We need to embrace our nation's motto, 'In God we trust,' and not be ashamed of it.
"To walk away from the Almighty is to embrace decline for a nation," he said. "To embrace him leads to renewal, for individuals and for nations."
The former Kansas agriculture secretary said his presidency would focus on faith and families, opposing abortion, opposing same-sex marriage and revamping the Social Security and tax systems, The New York Times reported Sunday.
Brownback, 50, was elected to the U.S. House of Representatives in 1994. Two years later, he was elected to the Senate, to complete Sen. Bob Dole's term when Dole ran for president.