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Scott Fitzpatrick, the 33-year-old Missouri treasurer and former House budget chairman, announced Thursday he will seek the GOP nomination for state auditor in 2022.

And a day earlier, in a sign Fitzpatrick may self-finance his 2022 run, he cut a $250,000 check to his campaign committee. He'd previously reported $100,000 cash on hand as of July 1.

Less than a year after winning his first full term as state treasurer, Fitzpatrick is the first major candidate to announce his intention to run for the only statewide office in Missouri currently held by a Democrat.

The incumbent Democrat, Nicole Galloway, announced she wouldn't seek another term last month.

So far, no Democrat has stepped forward to seek the office. Two other Republicans — House Speaker Rob Vescovo and state Rep. David Gregory — are said to be considering the race.

Gov. Mike Parson appointed Fitzpatrick as treasurer, and he was sworn into office in January 2019. The office was vacated by Eric Schmitt, who Parson appointed to serve as attorney general after the resignation of Josh Hawley to take a seat in the U.S. Senate.

He won a full term in November 2020, handily defeating Democrat Vicky England by 31 percentage points.

Under the Missouri Constitution, Fitzpatrick is eligible to run for re-election as treasurer for one more term in 2024.

Before becoming treasurer, Fitzpatrick served in the Missouri House, including a stint as chairman of the influential House budget committee. In 2003, Fitzpatrick founded MariCorp U.S. as a boat dock repair firm on Table Rock Lake in Shell Knob. In 2006, he expanded the company's reach to include manufacturing and installation of new docks and boat lifts.

In a post announcing his candidacy on Facebook, Fitzpatrick said he will rely on "my experiences to eliminate waste, fraud and abuse while holding politicians and bureaucrats responsible for how they spend Missourians' hard working money."

The Missouri Independent is a nonprofit, nonpartisan news organization covering state government and its impact on Missourians.

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