Former Maryland Gov. Martin O'Malley says he's close to deciding whether to run for president in 2016.
For Democrats who are uncertain about the party's presidential hopeful frontrunner, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, O'Malley is expected to become the key alternative at a time when she's under scrutiny for a string of controversies.
Is the timing right?
"I would make this race not because I'm against anyone of the other Democratic candidates, I would make this race because I love my country and I believe I have something to offer," O'Malley said while visiting New Hampshire on Wednesday.
And for O'Malley, what he offers in part are more left-leaning positions on issues as he tries to run as the "true progressive" in the race.
He reiterated his criticism of the Trans Pacific Partnership trade agreement blocked Tuesday in the U.S. Senate, even as Clinton, who supported the deal as secretary of state, has avoided taking a clear position.
When asked what that says about Clinton, O'Malley said, "I don't know... I think there will be more distinguishing. There will be other issues that come up in the course of this campaign."
Timing has been tricky for O'Malley as well. The former mayor of Baltimore has been accused of being partially to blame for the recent riots there.
"Sure it reflects on me, but it should cause all of us to reflect on what it means for our country and what it means for the cost of society that our children will be a part of," he said.