Montana Secretary of State Corey Stapleton announced several weeks ago that he was running for governor, and he appeared on Thursday’s Talk Back to answer questions and to promote his candidacy.

Stapleton, the only veteran of all 14 statewide elected officials, said veterans see public service in a different light than civilians.

“As a veteran, me included, we tend to think of things for life,” said Stapleton. “When you took an oath it was for life. Even when your service is over and you’ve done your four years, for the rest of your life you think, ‘I’m loyal to this country, I’m patriotic and I may or may not be in uniform’. You view your services, whether it’s a job or the government’s interaction with you with your taxes, your health care, always in the same light. It’s a bond, and you need to understand how that works.”

Stapleton was asked about a complaint filed by the Montana Democratic Party against him with the Montana Office of Political Practices. He said that issue will be dealt with in time by the commissioner, but that he’s no stranger to being taken to court.

“The Green Party sued me, the Democratic Party sued me, the Democratic Party has a complaint against me, and that doesn’t even begin to list the things you see on social media,” he said. “The bigger issue is you just keep your head up and you do what you think is right. I think Winston Churchill said, ‘if you have enemies, that’s good, that means you’re trying to do something.”

Stapleton now has company in the Republican ranks, as Attorney General Tim Fox announced his bid for governor early Thursday morning.

As of January 24, there were no declared candidates for governor from the Democratic Party.