WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Thaddeus McCotter, a quirky and independent-minded congressman from Michigan, launched a longshot bid on Friday for the 2012 Republican nomination to run for U.S. president.
The conservative four-term congressman from the Detroit suburbs unveiled a campaign website on Friday and told a Michigan radio station he would formally announce his candidacy on Saturday.
"There are a lot of people out there worried the American dream is in danger," McCotter told WJR radio.
He said the other Republican candidates are "fine people" but are not prepared to seize the opportunity to challenge Democratic President Barack Obama.
McCotter, 45, is a rock'n'roll fan and guitar player known to quote song lyrics and at times challenge his own party leaders. He is a strong supporter of the car industry and backed the industry bailout.
He enters the Republican campaign with little name recognition or money and will be a heavy underdog to rivals like former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney and his fellow member of Congress, Michele Bachmann of Minnesota.
McCotter's website lists five core principles for his candidacy, including "our liberty is from God, not from government" and "our prosperity is from the private sector not the public sector."
(Editing by John O'Callaghan)