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Cooper revs up NC Democrats for gubernatorial run

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North Carolina Attorney General Roy Cooper said Saturday he's planning to run for governor in 2016. North Carolina Attorney General Roy Cooper said Saturday he's planning to run for governor in 2016.
ASHEVILLE, N.C. -

North Carolina Attorney General Roy Cooper said Saturday he's planning to run for governor in 2016 and told Democratic Party activists that policies adopted this year by Gov. Pat McCrory and Republican legislative leaders have harmed the average state resident.

Cooper used his platform as a speaker at the state Democratic Party's Western Gala in Asheville to attack Republicans, who with McCrory's election last year controlled the state's legislative and executive branches for the first time in more than a century.

Asked whether he planned to run for governor in three years, Cooper told the Asheville Citizen-Times: "It's a little early to make a formal announcement, but certainly that's in the plans."

Cooper has declined similar gubernatorial bids in the past.

The Democratic attorney general and former state senator said he wants to restore North Carolina's reputation as a progressive Southern state after the policies implemented this year by GOP leaders.

"You know what they've done. Tax giveaways for the top 1 percent instead of real tax breaks for working North Carolina families, an end to child-care tax credits, election law changes that made it harder for North Carolinians to vote, overcrowded classrooms for public school teachers and layoffs for teacher assistants," he said. "This is not the North Carolina that any of us recognize."

U.S. Sen. Kay Hagan, who is running for re-election next year, was scheduled as the event's dinner speaker at the Grove Park Inn.

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