Washington (CNN) – Cory Gardner, the all-but-certain Republican nominee for Senate in Colorado, picked up a marquee national endorsement on Friday.
Florida Sen. Marco Rubio, a likely contender for the 2016 presidential nomination, is urging his supporters to contribute to Gardner's bid to unseat Sen. Mark Udall.
"Cory has been a leading conservative advocate for limited government and lower taxes in Colorado and is the kind of person we need in the United States Senate," Rubio says in the message sent to his Reclaim America PAC email list.
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A two-term congressman from Colorado's conservative 4th Congressional District, Gardner is the second 2014 Senate candidate Rubio has endorsed, after Arkansas Rep. Tom Cotton.
Gardner's decision to enter the Senate race in March, and his ability clear out a field of GOP opponents, was seen as a win for Republicans who are trying to expand their map of potential 2014 Senate pick-ups, even in Democratic-leaning states like Colorado.