In a video attacking the Biden-Harris administration for open borders and proposed tax increases, on Wednesday morning former N.C. Governor Pat McCrory made it official and became the second high-profile Republican candidate to enter the 2022 U.S. Senate race. The candidates compete to replace three-term Republican U.S. Senator Richard Burr who is retiring from Congress.

“Harris and Biden are opening our borders before they are opening our schools,” McCrory stated in his announcement video. “They are raising your taxes and even the price of gas.”

In a nod to Trump supporters McCrory proclaimed:

“Let’s put America first, and bring conservative North Carolina common sense to Washington.”

Carolina Journal first reported that McCrory was likely to enter the U.S. Senate race in February.

Former Greensboro-area Congressman Mark Walker announced his U.S. Senate bid in December of last year, and until this week had the race for the GOP primary to himself.

Walker did not wait for McCrory to enter the race before taking a jab at the former governor’s Senate candidacy.

“With taking back the Senate majority hinging on our success in North Carolina, why would we gamble on Pat McCrory – a career politician who has lost more statewide races than he’s won. McCrory has routinely attacked conservatives, including President Trump,” Walker tweeted on Tuesday.

Carolina Journal also reported recently that U.S. Rep. Ted Budd will follow suit and vie for the Republican nomination.

On Tuesday, Carolina Journal reported that Lt. Governor Mark Robinson is also thinking seriously about a run for U.S. Senate in 2022 and plans to announce his decision within days.

According to a memo obtained by Politico, McCrory would enter the race with a large lead over Walker and Budd. The data was collected by Glen Bolger of Public Opinion Strategies, who is expected to handle polling duties for the McCrory for Senate campaign.

In the survey McCrory was viewed favorably by 58% of likely primary voters and unfavorably by 13%; Walker was viewed favorably by 20 percent of GOP voters and unfavorably by 4 percent; Budd was viewed favorably by 16% and unfavorably by 5%.

In a hypothetical three-way matchup, McCrory led with nearly half the vote: 48%, compared to 13% for Walker and 9% for Budd. He also led both in one-on-one matchups. The polling memo did not include Lara Trump, or Lt. Gov. Mark Robinson.

Despite public pronouncements that she is still considering the race, sources continue to tell Carolina Journal that Lara Trump will not enter the U.S. Senate race for 2022.

What are McCrory’s chances of winning the primary and the Senate seat? Here is Carolina Journal’s in-depth analysis.