Former Representative and state prosecutor Tom Murry, R-Wake, has announced he is running for North Carolina Attorney General. Murry, a former member of the N.C. House from Morrisville, said he would stand for law enforcement if he were to be elected.

“My pledge to the people of North Carolina is simple,” Murry said. “I will stand beside local law enforcement, District Attorneys, and victim’s advocates to defend, not defund, the rule of law for all North Carolinians.”

In his announcement, Murry called out current N.C. Attorney General Josh Stein.

“For nearly eight years, our state has had an attorney general who has put his political ambitions first rather than defending the rule of law,” Murry said, referring to Stein.

Murry, who is also a pharmacist, declared “war” on the drug cartels, calling fentanyl a “weapon of mass destruction that is destroying our communities one overdose at a time.”

“I will form a rapid response statewide drug task force to support local law enforcement to send a strong message to the thugs bringing these dangerous chemicals across our borders,” Murry said. “You are not welcome in any corner of North Carolina. When I’m attorney general, [drug cartels] will not be able to hide any longer.”

Murry announced Sen. Tim Moffitt, R-Henderson; Rep. Jason Saine, R-Lincoln; former Republican Speaker Pro Tem Paul “Skip” Stam, R-Wake; and former Republican Majority Leader Mike Hager, R-Rutherford; were all endorsing his campaign.

“Tom Murry is a proven conservative,” said Stam. “As an attorney with prosecutorial experience, an Army veteran, and as a leader within the Judicial Branch, Tom has the right balance of skills to lead the Department of Justice in the right way instead of the radical politics of Josh Stein.”

Murry served as an at-large member of the Morrisville Town Council for five years from 2005 to 2010, until being appointed to serve in the N.C. House. During his time in the legislature, Murry advocated for voter ID and was a primary sponsor of a regulatory reform bill that eliminated over 1400 regulations.

Murry serves as a Judge Advocate (JAG) in the North Carolina Army National Guard. He deployed to the Middle East in 2017-18. Additionally, from 2019 to 20, Tom served as a full-time legal-assistance attorney, helping soldiers, their family members, and military retirees with their legal needs.

Murry is also an adjunct teacher at the Regent University School of Law and previously served as an executive leader in the N.C. Judicial Branch.

Murry previously won a primary for the state House in 2010. Murry went on to win two competitive general elections before losing another competitive election to now-state Sen. Gale Adcock in 2014.

“The NCDOJ is the largest law firm in North Carolina,” Murry said. “I look forward to leading in a conservative way, just like I did when I was chief legal counsel for the judicial branch and when I served in elected office on my town council and in the state legislature. I will defend laws passed by the General Assembly and represent the state vigorously when guilty verdicts are appealed. It’s time to put politics aside and make sure NCDOJ is laser-focused on the rule and practice of law to deliver justice statewide.”

Murry is the first Republican to declare his candidacy for N.C.’s Attorney General. Other Republicans speculated to be considering a run for the office are Sen. Danny Britt of Robeson County; Ray Starling, who serves as general counsel for the N.C. Chamber of Commerce; and Sam Hayes, who is general counsel for N.C. Speaker Tim Moore.