North Carolina Attorney General Josh Stein announces run for governor

RALEIGH, N.C. (WITN) – North Carolina’s attorney general is running for governor in 2024.

Josh Stein, a Democrat, made the announcement Wednesday morning on Twitter alongside a video that focuses on criticizing controversial Lt. Gov. Mark Robinson, a Republican.

“I’m Attorney General Josh Stein and I learned early on that somethings are worth fighting for, no matter the opposition,” Stein says in his campaign video.

He wants to push for larger economic development, more access to education, and accountability for opioid-producing drug companies. He also took jabs at Lieutenant Governor, Republican Mark Robinson.

“While some politicians spark division, ignite hate, and fan the flames of bigotry. Robinson wants to tell you who you can marry, when you’ll be pregnant, and who you should hate.”

Though Robinson has said multiple times, he’s likely to run for the seat, he’s yet to make an official bid.

“I think that we have a number of candidates that can run for governor and advance that agenda. As a party, we will stay neutral over the course of the primary and then we will support whoever comes out of it,” says Michael Whatley, NC Republican Chairman.

Current Governor Roy Cooper can’t run for reelection due to term limits. The last time that happened was from 2001 to 2009 with former governor Michael Easley.

Stein says, “We’ll build a better and brighter North Carolina for standing up for what’s right, fighting to fix what’s wrong, and doing right by every single North Carolinian, no matter who you are.”

It could become a race of wallets as Stein’s campaign says he has nearly 4 million dollars on hand now. There’s still more time for change as the race for governor is just beginning, and more candidates will throw their hats in the ring.

“North Carolina families need someone who is going to fight for them,” says Whatley.

Robinson’s office sent us a statement saying, “It should be clear that Stein is scared of a primary. He won his last election by less than 15,000 votes out of the more than 5 Million cast. He is hoping that by creating the narrative that it is him against Robinson, he can avoid a primary against Joan Higginbotham or Michael Regan.”

Stein was elected attorney general in 2016 and has 13 years of lawmaking experience in the state senate and is considered North Carolina’s top lawyer. He has a number of high-profile endorsements from Democratic party insiders including former Governor Jim Hunt and Representative Deborah Ross.