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Sen. Rand Paul endorses Romney in 2012 race

Sen. Rand Paul endorses Romney in 2012 race
Senator Rand Paul (R-Kentucky) told Fox News personality Sean Hannity on Thursday that he is formally endorsing Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney in the 2012 presidential race, reviving rumors about a possible Romney-Paul GOP ticket.

The news comes soon after the senator's father, presidential candidate Congressman Ron Paul (R-Texas), sent his supporters an email stating that he officially recognizes that Mitt Romney is set to become the Republican Party nominee challenging Barack Obama in the November election.

“Well, you know, 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 you know, now that the nominating process is over, tonight I’m happy to announce I’m going to be supporting Governor Romney,” Sen. Paul said this week.

In his discussion with Hannity, Sen. Paul also offered for the first time an explanation for the mysterious, closed-door meeting he had with Gov. Romney only days earlier:

“We talked issues, frankly, that are very important to me, that are important to my dad and to many of his followers,” explained Sen. Paul. “One of the big issues for our supporters, for myself and my dad is auditing the [Federal Reserve]. We think there needs to be more transparency to the Fed and more oversight by Congress. This is something Gov. Romney was supportive of throughout his campaign and also was supportive of in private to me.”

As RT reported last week, murmurings related to the Romney/Rand Paul meeting in Washington prompted several speculators to suggest that the presumptive Republican Party nominee was considering the Kentucky Senator as a possible running mate in the 2012 election. Jackie Bodnar, a spokeswoman for the Tea Party group Freedom Works, told ABC News that Romney bridging the Republican Party gap through Rand Paul could be a godsend for a GOP so strongly divided:

“I‘m definitely happy that he’s talking with limited government conservatives like Rand Paul,” Bodnar said. “It’s a victory in and of itself that the candidates are speaking the Tea Party language.”

Rep. Ron Paul is still competing for the GOP’s nomination and supporters of the congressman expect tens of thousands of fellow fans to come to PaulFest, a celebration of the libertarian lawmaker, during the days before the upcoming Republican National Convention in Florida.