Former Virginia Governor Jim Gilmore told viewers Thursday on “Special Report with Bret Baier” that “I have looked at the race, I've looked at the people that are in the race and I've concluded that I ought to run for the presidency.”

Gilmore announced his candidacy Thursday, making him the 17th Republican candidate to officially join the 2016 field.

“I think the United States is in decline,” Gilmore said, “it's in decline on its foreign policy, it's in decline on its national security. We're in decline on our economics. The report today was not good, I don't care what anybody says, we're not doing as well as we're supposed to do in economics. And I have the credentials to address these issues.”

Despite the already crowded field, Gilmore is undaunted by the challenge, noting that his resume sets him apart from the others, both at home and abroad: “I'm a former governor, so I'm in a position to address the domestic issues. We built jobs, we created economic opportunities in Virginia.”

“But more than that, I have a background in foreign policy that the other governors do not have. I chaired the national committee on Homeland Security for the United States for five years. My degree is in foreign policy. I'm a United States Army intelligence veteran, assigned to NATO in Europe. I'm well-traveled around the world. I was the Governor of Virginia during the 9/11 attack. I know what needs to be done in order to reverse this decline and get America back on track again, and I believe that's why I should be the Chief Executive. "