The move is not a surprise as Whitman, 52, has been inching her way toward the political scene since retiring from eBay last March after 10 years at the helm. She served as a national co-chairwoman of Republican John McCain's presidential bid. Before that, she supported former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney's bid for the GOP nomination.
While a spokesman, Henry Gomez, would not confirm the report, he did tell the AP that Whitman last week stepped down from the corporate boards of eBay, Procter & Gamble Co. and DreamWorks Animation SKG. The stated reason is "personal reasons and time commitments," but this also could be a sign that the billionaire is seeking to distance herself from possible conflicts of interest as she gears up for a campaign.
The AP reports a formal announcement by Whitman is expected in four to six weeks. In the Republican primary, she will likely be up against state Insurance Commissioner Steve Poizner and former Rep. Tom Campbell. Current Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger is barred by term limits from running again.
On the Democratic side, the contenders could include Sen. Dianne Feinstein, Former Gov. Jerry Brown, who is the state's current attorney general, San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom and Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa.