On Thursday, former Mass. Gov. Deval Patrick formalized his candidacy for the Democratic nomination to be president of the United States. At the outset of the 2020 election cycle last year, Patrick dabbled with the thought of entering the race, but ultimately decided against it due to his wife Diane Patrick’s diagnosis with uterine cancer. During an interview with Boston Public Radio on Thursday, Patrick said that his wife is now cancer-free, and that she has given him her blessing to his run.

“That’s the sort of thing that brings your feet right back to ground, and it seemed like the right thing to do was not to pursue the presidency, but to pay attention to my wife and my family,” Patrick said. “We celebrated, in May, our 35th anniversary, and she is cancer free and stronger everyday.”

Read more: Four Reasons Deval Patrick Decided To Run For President

Patrick said he knows that he is entering a crowded Democratic primary with opponents who have had several months to campaign in the early primary states, lock up Democratic donors, and create a campaign infrastructure in multiple states. Despite starting from a weaker position than front-runners like former Vice President Joe Biden and Sens. Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders, he said he would not be running if he did not see a path to victory ahead of him.

“If I didn’t think there was a way to put it together, as much as I want to be part of this moment, I wouldn’t do it,” Patrick said.

Some strategists said that despite Patrick’s strength as a candidate, his late entry and the wide swath of candidates will be hurdles that the former governor may not be able to surmount.

In a Politico article published Thursday, Cliff Albright, an activist with the group Black Votes Matter, expressed concern that Patrick is "not a national name."

"Folks in Louisiana aren’t going to be like, ‘oh wow. Deval Patrick joined the race.’ And even at the activist level, there’s no sense that this is someone we can rally behind," Albright said in the interview.

Patrick has previously said that his decision to enter the race came from his fear that no Democrat running will be able to win in the general election against President Donald Trump. On Thursday, he said that Democrats should be focused on finding a leader who can unify the nation, and not just one who has a strong slate of policy proposals.

“We need leadership not just that isn’t going to divide us the way the incumbent does, but isn’t about dividing us with just better policies attached to it,” Patrick said. “There has to be, I think, a way of building the success of the agenda itself through the campaign, and not just waiting until we win to start thinking about governing.”