Under the Dome

Crisco forms campaign committee for Ellmers' seat

Former Commerce secretary Keith Crisco has taken a big step toward running against U.S. Rep. Renee Ellmers in the general election next year.

He hasn’t made a formal announcement but on Monday filed paperwork with the Federal Election Commission for a campaign committee called Crisco for Congress.

In October, Crisco said he was considering challenging the Republican incumbent as a Democrat. “I’m a middle of the road guy,” he told Dome at the time.

A resident of Asheboro, Crisco was commerce secretary for four years under Gov. Bev Perdue. He has had a long career in the textiles industry, running Asheboro Elastics, which makes knitted elastics. He stepped down from the company at age 70 earlier this year.

Ellmers also has a challenger from the right, so far in the 2nd District primary. Radio talk show host Frank Roche of Cary has declared his intention to run as a Republican.

Ellmers is a two-term Republican from Dunn who has been embraced by the Republican hierarchy in Washington, but criticized from the right and the left, especially for her vote for the federal government shutdown.

A thanks to the N.C. Free Enterprise Foundation for spotting the FEC filing.