Montana AG Tim Fox enters governor’s race: “I am the candidate”

Montana Attorney General Tim Fox discusses addiction and intervention in Missoula on Wednesday. Fox on Thursday announced his campaign for governor. (Martin Kidsdton/MIssoula Current)

Facing the end of his second and last term as Montana’s attorney general, Tim Fox on Thursday officially announced his campaign for governor.

In doing so, Fox becomes the second Republican to enter the 2020 race as the GOP looks to take back an office it hasn’t held since 2004.

“Democrats have occupied the Governor’s Office for the last 14 years and it’s time for that to change,” Fox said in a statement. “As I travel around Montana, people are encouraging me to run because they want a governor with a record of results.”

Fox was in Missoula on Wednesday but didn’t announce his campaign until returning home to Helena. His is 61 and is barred by term limits from seeking a third term as attorney general.

Montana Gov. Steve Bullock, a Democrat, is also termed out, leaving the office open for what’s expected to be a long and heated race.

Several Republicans have already announced their campaign for governor, including Secretary of State Corey Stapleton and several lesser-known Republicans. It’s rumored that Rep. Greg Gianforte may quit his seat in Congress to enter the race as well.

The Democratic field of candidates has yet to take shape.

“Montanans want a strong conservative who fights for our communities, reins in government, and protects our constitutional liberties,” Fox said. “I believe I am the candidate who can lead our party to victory and our state to prosperity.”