ST. LOUIS (KMOX) – It’s official – U.S. Senator Claire McCaskill of Missouri has a challenger.

In a video posted this morning to his YouTube account, Missouri Attorney General Josh Hawley announces he’s running against McCaskill next year.

“We know too many people who can’t get a job. Or if they have a job, they can’t get a raise. Farmers are hurting, and that means farm kids can’t come home. And as for health care and taxes, they just keep going up,” he says.

Hawley says he and his wife didn’t plan to run for senate, but says Washington politicians didn’t get the message of this last election.

Democrats have anticipated this months. The Missouri Democratic Party in July launched a digital ad accusing Hawley of using the attorney general’s office as a stepping stone.

Campaign Manager David Kirby released the following statement on Hawley announcing his campaign.

“Since taking office in January, Josh Hawley has proven to be the worst type of politician. He broke his promise not to climb the political ladder. He broke his promise to create a Public Corruption Unit to crack down on the pay-to-play culture of Jefferson City. He lied about whether he would live in Jefferson City, as the law requires. And he lied for nearly two months about whether he was running for Senate.

“We applaud Josh for coming clean about his intention to run and look forward to contrasting his record of broken promises with Claire’s record of listening to Missourians and breaking through gridlock to get things done for them.”

However, Missouri Democratic Party Communications Director Meira Bernstein also released a statement, criticizing Hawley for allegedly not being honest about his intentions.

“Two months ago, Josh Hawley filed paperwork to run for United States Senate — and then lied to Missourians about it while he raised money behind closed doors with millionaires, DC special interests, and Republican leaders in Washington. It’s clear who Josh Hawley is running to represent in the United States Senate, and it’s not Missouri.”

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