8 p.m. Update: Reaction from the Brunner For Senate campaign.
Sarah Steelman has made efforts throughout her bid for the GOP nomination to be the next U.S. Senator from Missouri to draw "Maverick" comparisons between herself and Sarah Palin, the party's 2008 Vice Presidential candidate.
Tuesday afternoon, the Steelman campaign announced it had won her endorsement and released a statement from the former Alaska Governor:
As we seek to fundamentally restore our great nation to strength and prosperity, we must send more commonsense conservatives to the U.S. Senate. We need sincere public servants who will fight for us, not the special interests and the permanent political class in Washington. Sarah Steelman will fight for all of Missouri and all of us, and that is why we must send her to D.C. this fall.
Sarah has run a grassroots campaign the way it should be run – handshake by handshake, voter by voter, farm to farm, not TV ad after TV ad. As a former State Treasurer and State Senator, Sarah has often had to stand up to the political establishment – even those in her own party – to stop out of control spending and the destructive debt it leaves in its wake. As a mother of three, Sarah knows that we must cut our unsustainable debt to preserve our children’s future. She’ll fight hard for Ag families against the crushing regulations that the Obama administration has put on them.
Please join me in supporting Sarah Steelman for U.S. Senate. Let’s send a commonsense conservative woman from the Show Me state to show Washington how to get things done.
- Sarah Palin
Steelman is running against Frontenac businessman John Brunner and U.S. Rep. Todd Akin (R-Wildwood) in the GOP primary Aug. 7. The winner of the primary will face incumbent Sen. Claire McCaskill in November.
The Palin endorsement could reinforce Steelman's backing among Tea Party activists.
News of the Palin endorsement comes on the same day the "The Now or Never Political Action Committee" announced it had raised more than $440,000 in an effort to independently support Steelman's campaign between now and election day.
Tuesday evening, the Brunner campaign released the following statement:
"We are surprised that a conservative like Sarah Palin would endorse a pro-labor, pro-trial lawyer, pro-tax, anti-business candidate like Sarah Steelman who clearly is an unreliable conservative. Governor Palin must surely be unaware of Steelman's anti-conservative record.
"We are confident that when voters learn the true records of these three candidates, they will conclude that John Brunner is the only reliable conservative who can defeat Claire McCaskill and go to Washington, DC to get America working again."