Patrick Morrisey was elected as the Attorney General for the State of West Virginia on November 6, 2012, reelected to a second term Nov. 8, 2016, and reelected to a third term Nov. 3, 2020. He was initially sworn into office on January 14, 2013.
Patrick Morrisey is the first Republican to serve as Attorney General in West Virginia since 1933, and as a resident of Harpers Ferry, Morrisey is also the first Attorney General from Jefferson County in our state's history.
Since becoming Attorney General, Morrisey has made fighting fraud, waste, abuse, and corruption a top priority of the Office. Shortly after taking office, he instituted a new policy for hiring outside counsel that has dramatically increased transparency and saved the state more than $37 million. He has also returned more than $57 million in monies to the state and has brought in many millions more to state agency clients and consumers.
In late 2015, Attorney General Morrisey established a partnership with the Social Security Administration to fight disability fraud. That program saved $24.6 million since its inception in West Virginia.
When you combine the Attorney General's disability and Medicaid fraud units, as well as the office's efforts to enforce the tobacco settlement and preserve funding for the state and its political subdivisions, with the hundreds of millions generated by his Consumer Protection Division, the office's total money protected for consumers and taxpayers exceeds $1 billion since 2013.
Morrisey has been one of the most active Attorneys General in the country fighting federal overreach by filing lawsuits and submitting amicus briefs before the U.S. Supreme Court and other courts on a number of issues, ranging from protecting the Second Amendment to defending state jobs and our valuable energy resources. Morrisey led a 19-state coalition to victory in the U.S. Supreme Court after a multi-year challenge to the Obama-era Clean Power Plan, one of the most illegal and unprecedented regulations in our country's history. The Office's 2022 win in West Virginia v. EPA is among the most significant administrative and environmental law decisions of recent decades. Most recently, he led a 13-state effort challenging a provision in law preventing states from lowering taxes. He has been out in front defending the Second Amendment and human life.
During his tenure in office, Morrisey also has transformed the Office to aggressively fight the state's substance abuse epidemic. That includes development of best practices for prescribers and dispensers, a first-of-its-kind initiative in West Virginia endorsed by a broad array of state and national stakeholders.
Morrisey has fought the opioid epidemic on multiple fronts, including realizing more than $380 million in settlements with opioid manufacturers, distributors and marketers, while preserving the ability of counties and cities to realize much more. He filed a groundbreaking lawsuit against the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration that achieved sweeping reforms to the nation's drug quota system – in part due to his lawsuit, illicit prescribing has declined significantly.
Morrisey also has combated the opioid crisis with civil litigation, multistate initiatives, funding to target opioid abuse, criminal prosecutions, new technology, engagement with the faith-based community, and significant education efforts.
In October 2020, Morrisey scored a historic victory in securing a $101.35 million settlement to recoup state road funding and restore competition in the state-approved asphalt and paving market. It marked the largest, single-state antitrust settlement in West Virginia's history.
Morrisey secured a $160 million Internet settlement in December 2015, which marked the largest, independently negotiated consumer protection settlement in West Virginia's history. He also strengthened the Office's Consumer Protection Division, enabling it to vigorously enforce the state's laws and proactively educate citizens about scams and ways to protect their identities.
In practice since 1992, Morrisey worked on many high profile health care matters in private practice prior to serving as Attorney General, and possesses a broad array of experience on regulatory issues, Medicare, Medicaid, policy, fraud and abuse investigations, legislative matters, strategic counseling, and legal and policy challenges to federal statutes and regulations.
Between 1999 and 2004, Morrisey served as the Deputy Staff Director and Chief Health Care Counsel to the House of Representatives Energy and Commerce Committee, helping draft and negotiate major legislation, including the Medicare Modernization Act of 2003 and the Bioterrorism and Public Health Preparedness Act of 2002. Morrisey served as the principal liaison for the House of Representatives Energy and Commerce Committee on health care issues to the White House, the U.S. Senate, the House of Representatives, the Department of Health and Human Services, and the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services.
Morrisey graduated with honors from Rutgers College in 1989 earning Bachelor of Arts degrees in history and political science. He received a juris doctor from Rutgers Law School-Newark in 1992.
Prior to law school, he also served as a tennis umpire, working his way up to officiating at the U.S. Open in 1988 and 1989.
A product of a working-class family, Morrisey is married and has a stepdaughter. His father was a World War II veteran and his mother was a registered nurse with the Veterans Administration.