Ex-Shelby mayor to run for US Senate in NC - WBTV 3 News, Weather, Sports, and Traffic for Charlotte, NC

Ex-Shelby mayor to run for US Senate in NC

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SHELBY, N.C. (AP) -

The former mayor of a western Piedmont city announced Monday he's joining NorthCarolina's U.S. Senate race this year, bringing the total number of Republican candidates in the race to at least six.

Ted Alexander, the mayor of Shelby for eight years until 2011, has been Cleveland County Republican Party chairman for the past year. The GOP primary in May is supposed to determine the top challenger to Democratic incumbent Kay Hagan, who doesn't face opposition from prominent members in her party.

Alexander told The Shelby Star he felt God was compelling him to get in the race and believes what he's learned over the years could help North Carolina and the country during a critical period.

Alexander, 53, said some programs designed to help the poor "are now literally hurting those very same people, and in fact have now begun to hurt many others as well by taking away their dignity, initiative and the entrepreneurial spirit that has made our country great."

He said if elected he would use his life experiences and "socially and economically conservative philosophy" to work to repeal the federal health care overhaul and pass a constitutional amendment requiring a balance budget.

Alexander has worked on downtown development and historic preservation issues during his career.

Other announced candidates for the Republican nomination include state House Speaker Thom Tillis, the Rev. Mark Harris of Charlotte and Cary obstetrician Dr. Greg Brannon.

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