(CNN) – Sen. Rand Paul of Kentucky, tea party favorite and son of presidential candidate Ron Paul, officially endorsed Mitt Romney late Thursday night.
"My first choice had always been my father. I campaigned for him when I was 11-years-old. He's still my first pick, but now that the nominating process is over, tonight I'm happy to announce that I'm going to be supporting Gov. Mitt Romney," Rand Paul said on Fox News.
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His announcement came one day after his father acknowledged he would not become the Republican nominee, despite maintaining for months that he would stay in the fight for the White House.
Ron Paul ended his official campaign events weeks ago, but has not technically suspended his candidacy and will have delegates at the Republican National Convention in August.
The endorsement from Rand Paul, who won his 2010 Senate bid with strong tea party support, could be a boost for Romney as the candidate attempts to shore up different factions of the Republican Party, including Ron Paul's vocal and active supporters.
Asked why he was throwing his voice behind Romney, Rand Paul listed off a number of ways his family values and family history line up with that of Romney–including the fact that both he and the candidate have fathers who ran for president. Romney’s father, the late George Romney, served as Michigan governor and was a presidential candidate in 1968.
The senator then went on to talk about policies, saying he met with Romney recently in Washington and discussed the candidate's support for reforming the Federal Reserve, limiting regulations, and opposing the proposed Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA). The proposed legislation, which failed to garner enough support in the Senate, called for expanded federal power online in preventing internet piracy.
"I think there's a lot of kinship between us on those issues," he said.
Romney responded Thursday night to the endorsement, saying in a statement he was "honored" to have the senator's backing.
"Senator Paul has been a leading voice in the effort to scale back the size and reach of government and promote liberty," Romney said. "I am grateful for Senator Paul's support and look forward to working with him to get America back on the right track."
– CNN's Ashley Killough contributed to this report.
Must be midnight...the Tea Party is turning back into the same old GOP.
In other news, a Fox News poll reported that Obama has a positive job approval rating. Republicans should panic when a Fox News poll shows that Obama has a positive job approval rating.
Mitt Romney is collecting a lot endorsements from those on the extreme right. Rand Paul is on record as stating that the Civil Rights Act is unconstitutional. It seems that he is of the opinion that if a store owner decides that he doesn't want to serve certain customers, then he has a right to not serve them. He has hinted that bigotry and racism is an expression of your freedom of speech.
And? So? But? Therefore?
Who cares about these endorsements? These people don't matter in the long run. The only opinion I'm interested in is mine, and I love this country. We can be great again as long as there are no GOP officials in office.
@Rudy NYC - That is because the Civil Rights Act IS unconstitutional. Just because we all like the Civil Rights act doesn't automatically make it constitutional. Tell me why a store owner who bought a store with his own money should not be able to decide who can come on his property? And yes bigotry is an expression of speech. Everyone gets to say what they think no matter how distasteful. We don't have freedom of speech so we can say polite things and talk about the weather. We have freedom of speech to say controversial things.
Look ppl, I am a die hard Ron Paul supporter and will never vote Romney even if Ron tells me to, and the Pauls already know this. But Rand is smart to endorse. He is the ONLY one in the senate fighting the Fed and needs to hols his seat. The problem is that Rand's base is idiot Tea Party, not educated libertarians. It's just part of the game. But it doesn't mean Rand is gonna side with Romney on the issues once he gets re-relected
Wait a minute... I thought the Tea Party said they would not compromise on their principles and now they're endorsing Mitt Romney of all people?!? Oh, this is too funny!
Does he think this will help him get preferment? If I were him, I would be looking at what I was doing to earn a living four years from now when he will be out of a job.
Hail to the Republican Party.......................
Why are republicans always so pompous?? Back to those days, when Scott Brown won in Mass. it was a celebration with no end and now we do not hear anything about him. Now it is another Scott in Wisconsin. Two days later it is coming the son of Ron Paul. Who is not tired of all these kind of shows??
This is a smart and bold move by Rand. His endorsement means his voice will be heard and the voices of all his followers will be heard. We need a strong anti-war group in the GOP so the neocons don't send us into more idiotic wars that kill our young men and drain our treasury. The neocons and Bush practically destroyed this country and the neocons are already weasling their way into Romney's organization. America First – we don't need to fix the world and we won't be able to fix the Middle East.
When Rand Paul accepted Mitch McConnell's help and money endorsements in his senate race I knew that he would just be another GOP enabler. His father is the only one in that family with any backbone, and I would be shocked if Ron Paul gave his endorsement to Romney.
@sbssue1 ....Rand read it and wept.
@LCSWquilter You're making mountains out of a molehill. Romney is the presumptive and the will-be GOP nominee. Concede and the GOP war will be in cease-fire until 2016. General election wars still persist.
I hate to bust your bubble, but you don't get to decide what is unconstitutional. The Supreme Court does. And if the Supreme Court decides to strike down Obama's health care bill, millions of people will lose health insurance, and health insurance premiums would still rise, because the insured would still pay for the uninsured. There is a federal law from 1986 (Emergency Medical Treatment and Active Labor Act) that requires hospitals to provide emergency care to all, regardless of ability to pay. Hospitals shift the costs to people who are insured. If the individual mandate is struck down but the rest of the bill survives, premiums will go up by 2%, according to analysis by the Congressional Budget Office, the RAND Corporation and others.
CNN is calling this a "big endorsement?" Really? Like the white Republican wouldn't have won Kentucky without it?
Did anybody in the history of America ever vote for someone based on an endorsement?
I do sense out Romney is soon to announce Rand Paul as his VP. His endorsement has come out at a time when it is not needed. First it was his father (Ron Paul) yesterday, and today is his son Rand. If Romney is clever enough, he should not go for this guy. He has no difference between himself and Sarah. Romney should understand that Ron Paul supporters are not necessarily Rand Paul supporters.
Where in Atlas Shrugged does it promote selling-out your core political values?
First Trump now son of Paultard. Wow, Romney is collecting his own virtual Mensa.
I've never seen a puppet as big as Romney.
The Puppet Masters must be so pleased with their purchase. "Lie and don't blink!" they tell him,and he does. "Say this, not this!" they order, and he complies.
Romney has more money than Croesus but he had to sell his soul to obtain the nomination. It was handed to him via a mandate from the backers of Citizens United and other 1%ers like the Koch brothers. They run his political ads, they feed him his lines, they will ultimately if we're stupid, adn lazy enough to allow it tell him how to preside and what bills to sign. And we? Well we'll be royally screwed and terminally unemployed. And it'll serve us right.
Obama 2012. Think America....and REMEMBER.
All these endorsements are nothing but a farce. First these candidates fight against each other and then they join the same party. I had great hopes to vote for Dr Ron Paul but with Rand Paul endorsing Mr Mitt Romney they have lost my vote. The good old GOP is 50 years behind times.
Keep voting for self serving, republican politicians like this and watch for freedoms and quality of life go down the drain...stupid people!
But didn't Sarah Palin endorse him too? So much for endorsements!!!!!! Hahahahahahahahahahaha
@ST – Ron Paul never endorsed Romney, and he won't. Rand is Rand, and I'm not a big fan. Sure, he's better than 95% of Republicans, but compared to his father, he disappoints.
@sck – What does Atlas Shrugged have to do with it? Rand Paul is not an objectivist.
God could indorse Romney and it would not help his change of winning. The guy is a loser.