Fred Karger is better known as a gay marriage activist than a politician, but the 60-year-old Republican says he's ready to become a serious contender for the presidential GOP nomination.

Karger announced he is “seriously considering becoming a candidate for president of the United States in 2012 as an Independent Republican” in New Orleans as the city played host to the Southern Republican Leadership Conference (SRLC) 2010, the most prominent Republican meet up outside of the Republican National Convention.

If he becomes a candidate, Karger would make history as the first openly gay presidential candidate.

Not so fast, says Jimmy LaSalvia, executive director of the gay GOP group GOProud, who remains skeptical about Karger's motivations.

When asked if he believed Karger's candidacy is a stunt, LaSalvia answered with a laconic “yes.”

“All I ask GOProud and Jimmy to do is what I am asking all LGBTQ leaders to do,” Karger told On Top Magazine. “Keep an open mind and watch what I do.”

“I certainly understand people's apprehension,” he added, “[But] I would never put my long, and I believe well respected, reputation in politics on the line unless I was going to give it my all.”

Karger's life before advocating for gay marriage includes decades of experience managing the campaigns of Republican candidates, including six presidential candidates.

In 2008, Karger founded Californians Against Hate. The group has led boycotts against major donors to California's anti-gay marriage initiative, Proposition 8. He's also targeted the National Organization for Marriage (NOM), the nation's most vociferous opponent of gay marriage, and the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (the Mormons), filing formal complaints with state election officials in California and Maine against both groups.

Karger's first campaign stop will be in New Hampshire on April 26.

“Isn't it great to be an American?” LaSalvia said. “Anyone who was born in this country has the opportunity to run for president of the United States … even gay Americans.”