“I am a candidate for President of the United States of America.
“I was raised to believe that where a person started doesn’t mean that’s where he has to stop. I always believed that a kid could go from Hope to higher ground.
“I learned the difference between right and wrong. And I learned that God loves me as much as he loves anyone, but that he doesn’t love some more than others," Huckabee said during an event in his hometown of Hope, Arkansas.
Huckabee also criticized President Barack Obama during his announcement speech.
“Eight years later our debt has more than doubled, America’s leadership in the world has completely evaporated and the country is more polarized than ever in my lifetime.
“I’m running for President because I know there is a difference between making a speech and making government accountable to the people who have to pay for it,” Huckabee said.
"One thing that has to happen in America is moving the power away from Washington, where people are so disconnected from the way that so many ordinary Americans live.
"It's a disaster. Power needs to be local and limited, because the closer government is to the people, the more accountable it is to the people who are being governed," Huckabee said in his 2016 campaign introduction video.