Evan McMullin, chief Republican policy director in the U.S. House of Representatives and former CIA officer, has announced that he will run an independent, conservative campaign for president.
Mr. McMullin aims to provide conservative voters an alternative to Republican nominee Donald Trump.
“In a year where Americans have lost faith in the candidates of both major parties, it’s time for a generation of new leadership to step up,” Mr. McMullin said in a statement issued to ABC News.
“It’s never too late to do the right thing, and America deserves much better than either Donald Trump or Hillary Clinton can offer us. I humbly offer myself as a leader who can give millions of disaffected Americans a conservative choice for President.”
According to ABC News, a group of anti-Trump Republicans organized as “Better for America” had spent the past few months selecting a conservative to challenge Mr. Trump in an independent bid.
Mr. McMullin has announced that he will step down from his position as chief policy director for the House Republicans on Monday and will subsequently file his paperwork to officially launch his campaign.
With only three months until the election, the odds are stacked against the former CIA officer. Regardless, his Republican backers believe he could win over conservative voters uncomfortable with either a Trump or Clinton presidency.
Born in Provo, Utah, Mr. McMullin served as a Mormon missionary in Brazil and as a United Nations volunteer refugee resettlement officer in Jordan before joining the CIA as a counterterrorism officer. He left the CIA in 2011 to work for Goldman Sachs before becoming the chief policy director of the House Republican Conference.