Top Ky. Republicans endorse U.S. Sen. Rand Paul's re-election bid

12/21/2015 06:05 PM

Facing minimal resistance in his re-election efforts thus far, Republican U.S. Sen. Rand Paul rolled out numerous endorsements from Kentucky’s top elected officials on Monday.

Those who are backing Paul’s re-election to the U.S. Senate include the junior senator’s colleague in the chamber, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell; the state’s five GOP delegates in the U.S. House; and Gov. Matt Bevin, according a news release from Paul’s Senate campaign.

Paul is tied for seventh among Republican presidential candidates in recent polling per Real Clear Politics, and he’s under little pressure to call off his presidential bid after Democratic Auditor Adam Edelen, pegged as a likely challenger in next year’s Senate race, lost his office in the Nov. 3 election despite a monumental funding advantage over his opponent, GOP Rep. Mike Harmon of Danville.

“I ran for office because, like many Kentuckians, I was alarmed at the problems facing our country: a stagnant and uneven economy, a growing national debt, out of control federal spending, a disastrous health care plan, the assault on our civil rights and liberties, and a misguided foreign policy,” Paul said in a statement.

“Since being elected in 2010, I have drawn attention to these problems and others here in Kentucky, like the War on Coal, the ban on industrial hemp, and our need for criminal justice reform. I have sought to work with any and all who are eager to find solutions to the issues facing our Commonwealth, and I am incredibly grateful for the support of my colleagues and fellow Republican leaders in Kentucky as I continue to work hard for all Kentuckians.”

The announcement comes less than a week after New York real estate mogul Donald Trump, who holds a double-digit polling lead in the GOP presidential field, said that Paul should face a primary challenge, according to a report by the Lexington Herald-Leader. James Gould, a Lexington Republican, has filed against Paul in the race, as have Democrats Tom Recktenwald of Louisville and Jeff Kender of Phelps.

Paul’s endorsements show that the state’s top Republicans are united behind his bid for a second term in Washington, D.C.

“I am proud to support my friend Rand Paul for his re-election to the U.S. Senate,” McConnell said in a statement. “Rand has been an irreplaceable partner in fighting for Kentucky priorities and Kentucky values. His innovative mind for conservative reforms that create jobs and get the economy working again is essential in the U.S. Senate as we seek to reverse Obama policies that have hurt Kentucky families.”

Said U.S. Rep. Thomas Massie of Garrison: “Sen. Rand Paul inspired me to seek office, and I will continue to stand with him and the other principled conservatives in Washington, D.C. to fight for the people of Kentucky and our nation. Over the past four years, Rand has been a true Constitutional conservative and a fearless advocate for personal liberty, economic freedom, and fiscal responsibility.”

Others named in the release include other Republicans elected to state constitutional offices, Senate President Robert Stivers and House Minority Floor Leader Jeff Hoover.

Kevin Wheatley

Kevin Wheatley is a reporter for Pure Politics. He joined cn|2 in September 2014 after five years at The State Journal in Frankfort, where he covered Kentucky government and politics. You can reach him at kevin.wheatley@charter.com or 502-792-1135 and follow him on Twitter at @KWheatley_cn2.

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