Paul Ryan Backs Rubio in Florida

Posted January 6, 2010 at 9:20am

Rep. Paul Ryan (Wis.), a young but increasingly influential House Republican, endorsed former Florida Speaker Marco Rubio in the Sunshine State’s GOP Senate race on Wednesday, picking him over party establishment favorite Gov. Charlie Crist (R).

In a statement, Ryan said Rubio “has proven he is exactly the type of consistent, principled conservative the Republican Party needs to ensure the relationship between the federal government and the individual is one that maximizes freedom and prosperity.—

Ryan, a member of the powerful Ways and Means Committee and ranking member of the Budget Committee, has emerged as a leading GOP voice on fiscal matters, and his backing reinforces Rubio’s shift from conservative agitator to mainstream candidate.

Crist and Rubio are battling for the Republican nomination. Rep. Kendrick Meek is the likely Democratic nominee in the open-seat contest.