CHARLESTON, W.Va. — State Attorney General Patrick Morrisey announced Tuesday that he’ll seek a second term in office instead of running for governor.
“This was never about any one person this is about ensuring that you have a good team in place,” Morrisey said. “I’m a big believer that you’re only good as your weakest link and if I’m in the AG position I think we can have an even more successful year in 2016.”
Morrisey had said on more than one occasion in recent weeks that he was seriously considering a run for governor but so were fellow Republicans state Senate President Bill Cole and First District Congressman David McKinley. Cole announced his run two weeks ago and McKinley followed with a reelection bid announcement.
When asked Tuesday if his decision was based on what was best for the West Virginia Republican Party Morrisey said the focus was on the electorate.
“This is the best decision for the people of the state and ultimately that’s the most important thing,” he said.
Morrisey stopped just short of endorsing Cole Tuesday.
“We currently have a strong candidate for governor and while more people may step forward I’ve been impressed with Bill Cole’s leadership skills and the reasons why he’s pursuing the governorship. So that’s certainly a factor,” Morrisey said.
Morrisey said he also decided to seek reelection to follow through on several fights against the federal EPA when it comes to air and water.
“I want to ensure that West Virginia continues to be a national leader against the President’s EPA policies and the best way for me to do that is through my position as attorney general,” Morrisey said.
Morrisey also said there’s more work to do to improve the state’s legal and business climates. He said he’ll make a more formal announcement about his reelection bid in the months to come.