After months of talk, former Charlotte mayor Pat McCrory made it official Tuesday: He's running for governor.
He made the announcement in Greensboro, not far from where he grew up.
McCrory quoted a song by the Who, saying he doesn't want to be the new boss -- same as the old boss.
He also said he wants to change the culture in Raleigh, starting with the economy.
"My goal is to have North Carolina to be one of the first states to get out of this recession, not one of the last states," McCrory said.
He wants to cut corporate taxes and business regulation, build roads to attract industry, and get the state into what he called "the energy exploration business." He didn't say exactly what that meant.
Hundreds turned out to hear McCrory's message, clapping every few lines, waving signs and singing his praises. Childhood friend Julee Marshall said, "It's Pat. It's Pat McCrory. And he's one of us."
McCrory's critics also spoke out. Even before McCrory made his announcement, Lt. Governor Walter Dalton, who also is running for governor, issued a statement that read, in part: "Now that he's finally made it official, the people of North Carolina will get a chance to scrutinize Pat McCrory's agenda. It is a destructive agenda that embraces a backwards-facing vision that cuts education funding, slashes teaching jobs and hurts our ability to recruit new business."
Gerrick Brenner, with the group Progress NC Action, told Eyewitness News almost the same words.
"The question is, is Pat McCrory going to be a rubber stamp for an extremist agenda in the North Carolina General Assembly?" Brenner said.