Tom Foley, a Connecticut-based businessman and former U.S. Ambassador to Ireland under George Bush, has announced that he will run for governor of Connecticut in 2010.

Foley was a popular incumbent in the Dublin job and did important work in ensuring the American role in the Irish peace process was kept visible.

Foley had originally decided to run for the U.S. Senate seat currently held by Chris Dodd, but that race has turned very tough. Instead, he will now run for governor after incumbent Republican Jodi Rell announced she would not be seeking reelection

Foley, a major fundraiser for President George W. Bush and former ambassador, sent an e-mail to supporters announcing his decision.

"Last week, I announced that I was looking at the race for Governor. Since then, I have had hundreds of e-mails from supporters and have spoken to over one hundred people - including many who are currently serving in our state government.

"They have overwhelmingly encouraged me to run for Governor. So I am announcing today that I will be running for Governor of this great State.

“In the weeks ahead I will be assembling a team to evaluate options for solving the fiscal and other problems we face. We will prepare a 'Plan Forward' for Connecticut which I will share with you when it is complete."