Cara Mund: former Miss America announces bid for Congress seat

The Harvard Law graduate will run as an independent for North Dakota if she gains the necessary signatures

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Cara Mund, the former Miss America who gained attention by criticising the pageant at the end of her 2018 reign, plans to run for Congress in North Dakota as an independent.

Ms Mund announced her candidacy on social media and said she would start gathering the 1,000 signatures she needed to get on the ballot.

She said on Wednesday that her concern about abortion rights prompted her to launch her independent bid for the US House in her home state.

The US Supreme Court's ruling to overturn a constitutional right to abortion was "just a moment where I knew we need more women in office", Ms Mund told AP.

The Harvard Law School and Brown University graduate was an intern for Republican Senator John Hoeven in Washington and was his guest at the State of the Union address in 2018.

"I don't really identify as a Democrat or Republican, but rather just as an American. I'm a person, not a party," Ms Mund posted on her Facebook page.

If she obtains the signatures, she will face Republican Congressman Kelly Armstrong, who is seeking a second term, and Democrat Mark Haugen of Bismarck, a University of Maryland graduate adviser and former paramedic.

“I am so proud to be a North Dakotan,” Ms Mund said. “It would be an honour and a privilege to represent the people of our state in Congress.

"I am ready to get to work and look forward to putting North Dakotans first.”

Ms Mund, who was Miss North Dakota, won the crown on a platform of increasing the number of women elected to political office.

In one of her onstage interviews, she said then-president Donald Trump was wrong to withdraw the US from the Paris Climate Accord aimed at reducing greenhouse gas emissions that contribute to global warming.

Updated: August 11, 2022, 5:14 AM