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In endorsement, Paul opens fundraising spigot for impoverished Broun campaign

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Former Congressman Ron PaulThe U.S. Senate campaign of Rep. Paul Broun scored the endorsement Thursday of former Congressman Ron Paul, the Texas lawmaker who cultivated a national network of rowdy libertarian activists and small dollar donors over the last four decades in the House of Representatives.

“Paul Broun and I worked together in the House to bring some necessary oversight to the Federal Reserve,” Paul said of the pair’s mutual interest in auditing the nation’s central bank. “I endorse Paul Broun on his candidacy to the U.S. Senate.”

Broun, in the same release, gushed on Paul’s “courage and principles” in opposing “out-of-control” spending.

“As Dr. Paul knows, it’s often a lonely fight when you’re one of the few Members in Congress with the courage and principles to say no to the out-of-control spending being done by both political parties,” Broun said. “When Dr. Paul retired, I picked up the mantle right where he left off by reintroducing his Audit the Fed bill. … I’m ready to take that kind of leadership along with my beliefs about limited government to the United States Senate.”

Broun had less than a quarter of the cash reserved than either of his likely rivals–his campaign entered the second quarter of the year with little more than $200,000 banked, according to its most recent finance disclosures–but the Paul endorsement opens a new revenue stream.

Supporters of Paul’s presidential bids made headlines in 2008 and again in 2012 when they raised millions online for his campaign in one-day events, dubbed money bombs. After his attempts to capture the White House failed, his supporters concentrated their giving instead on Paul-approved legislative candidates.

It’s an unfamiliar advantage that Broun readily acknowledged Thursday: “With support from Dr. Paul and the grassroots community,” he said, “this is a race that I know we can win.”

But While Paul’s nod may yet infuse Broun’s campaign with some much-needed cash and libertarian cred, it won’t do much to soften the perception among moderates and independents that the Georgian is too conservative for the Senate.

Paul retired from Congress this year, focusing his energies instead on pushing noninterventionist foreign policy through his newly-formed think tank.

- James Richardson

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