Former Shelby mayor Ted Alexander will join the U.S. Senate race to oppose Democratic incumbent Kay Hagan.
His entrance puts the count of announced candidates contending for the Republican Party nomination now at six. The more crowded the field the more likely it is headed to a run-off election – a prospect that force Republicans to battle it out through July as Democrats focus on November.
Alexander announced his candidacy Monday afternoon in Shelby’s city hall. The local newspaper, The Star, live-tweeted the announcement, reporting a couple dozen attendees. In his speech, Alexander suggested that the federal government is currently hurting its people on “virtually every level.”
Alexander served as Shelby's mayor from 2003-2011 and is currently chairman of the Cleveland County Republican Party. However, he told Dome that he will resign from this position Monday night to make his bid.
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In an interview, Alexander said he could not continue to “idly sit by” under the current practices of the federal government.
“The war on poverty has now become almost a war on our own citizens. It’s hurting our country through a number of taxes, regulations and things that hurt business creation, stifle entrepreneurialism and create a dependent class that looks to the government for assistance,” he said.
Alexander said what sets him apart from the other candidates vying for the GOP nomination is his experience as an elected local official; his conservative social and fiscal ideology that put him “in touch with the vast majority of those in North Carolina;” and his insight into “the heart of North Carolina” as a native.