SANTA FE, NM (Reuters) - Former New Mexico Governor Gary Johnson said on Wednesday he is dropping out of the Republican presidential race and will run for president as a Libertarian.

His comments came at a news conference in Santa Fe.

As a long-shot candidate for president, Johnson had proposed cutting government spending, reducing taxes and legalizing marijuana.

As governor of New Mexico from 1995 to 2003, Johnson vetoed so many bills -- some 750 -- that he was later nicknamed "Governor Veto."

Johnson, a mountain climber, skier and bicyclist, lives in Taos.

(Reporting by Dennis Carroll; Writing by Corrie MacLaggan; Editing by Jerry Norton)