This post appears here courtesy of the Carolina Journal
. The author of this post is Theresa Opeka
An Army Special Forces veteran from Gastonia is taking a second stab at running for Congress.
On Monday, Pat Harrigan, a combat Green Beret who earned two Bronze Stars in Afghanistan, announced a 2024 run for Congress in the GOP primary.
"Our country is in a downward spiral because of President Biden's weak economy and disastrous foreign policy decisions,"
Harrigan said in a press release. "It's a slap in the face to every American. As a Green Beret, I've been trained to face adversity. And I'm stepping up once again to take charge and change the direction we're headed."
He continued by saying that it isn't just another campaign but rather a battle that he is wholeheartedly devoted to winning for our nation's core values.
Harrigan ran as the GOP nominee in NC-14 in 2022 but was defeated by Democrat state Sen. Jeff Jackson 58% to 42%.
Harrigan and his wife Rocky came to North Carolina in 2013. A graduate of the US Military Academy at West Point, he was stationed at Fort Bragg in Fayetteville upon being selected for the Special Forces of the US Army, the Green Berets. He served until 2018.
"After coming back home, my wife and I started a business in our double-wide trailer out west of Fayetteville,"
he told Carolina Journal in May 2022. "And we've grown that in six short years to a 120,000 sq. ft. facility on 80 acres with 65 or so employees."
An expert in firearms design, manufacturing, and global industry regulatory matters, he currently owns businesses that manufacture American-made defense products in Western North Carolina. Harrigan told CJ that he owned and operated companies, including ZRODelta, UnBrandedAR, and US Optics.
Harrigan lists the economy, including fighting inflation, as an issue he is focused on, just like he did in May 2022.
"We have to stop inflation now,"
he told CJ. "This is hurting American families, and we are on the precipice of setting an entire generation behind and leaving a ton of folks in debt. This has to stop now."
Harrigan also mentions coming up with a strategy to fast-track energy independence that includes domestic oil exploration, pipeline construction, fracking, nuclear energy development, solar, wind, coal, and all other forms of energy.
In addition, national security, securing the southern border, the 2nd Amendment, crime, election integrity, and cultural integrity, including protecting the unborn, parental rights, defending women's sports, and religious freedom are all issues he stands behind.
Harrigan said he is investing $500,000 of his own money into his congressional campaign at the outset.
But will he face off against Jackson, who has been dubbed "Congress' biggest Tik-Tok star?"
The state legislature is set to go another round with redistricting maps this fall. Also adding uncertainty to the race, there have been rumblings about Jackson thinking about a run on the Democratic ticket for attorney general in North Carolina. Jackson has told a few news outlets that he would make a final decision on entering the AG race once the new maps are released.