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Daniel Malloy

U.S. Chamber backs Jack Kingston in Senate race

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WASHINGTON — The U.S. Chamber of Commerce today endorsed Rep. Jack Kingston in the Georgia U.S. Senate race, solidifying his position as the choice of the business establishment and representing a blow to businessman David Perdue, who is fighting in the same space of the Republican primary electorate.

The Chamber can back up its endorsement with independent spending, though political director Rob Engstrom would not reveal any plans for a buy. The group has already spent $500,000 each backing Sens. Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., and Thad Cochran, R-Miss., in their primaries against tea party insurgents.

Word is Perdue had a testy interview with the Chamber, but Kingston also mostly votes with the Chamber’s wishes: He got 75 percent on the group’s scorecard last year, compared with 67 percent for Rep. Phil Gingrey and 46 percent for Rep. Paul Broun.

Here’s the full release:

ATLANTA, GA  – The world’s largest business federation today has given its backing to Jack Kingston’s bid for United States Senate citing his pro-jobs record and pro-growth vision.

In announcing the endorsement Rob Engstrom, the Chamber’s National Political Director, praised Kingston’s support for America’s job creators.

“Now more than ever we need conservative leaders with a demonstrated record of fighting for Georgia jobs, and that leader is Jack Kingston,” Engstrom said. “As Senator, Jack will help lead America’s comeback and lay the groundwork for more jobs, more growth, and a generation of prosperity.”

Kingston’s pro-business record has also garnered the support of many businesses across Georgia.

“Jack Kingston’s combination of business experience, Georgia values, and a proven conservative record is the right fit for Georgia,” said Ben Tarbutton, III, Assistant Vice President of Sandersville Railroad who also serves on the board of the Georgia Chamber of Commerce.  “He is leading the fight in the House and we know he can get it done in the Senate.”

Tarbutton last year agreed to serve as Kingston’s Statewide Finance Chairman in order to help build the resources necessary for his bid.

Kingston, who first worked at the Port of Savannah before launching a successful career selling insurance, helped grow a small business into one of the largest privately held insurance brokerages in the country.

He has established himself as a pro-business, small government conservative in Congress by fighting to limit the government’s interference in our lives while making America’s economy more competitive.  He credits his business experience for guiding his pro-growth legislative agenda.

“We can reignite America’s economy by getting big government out of the way of job creation and economic growth,” said Kingston.  “We need to make America’s tax code more competitive, harness our energy potential, and clear up the bureaucratic red tape like that holding up the Savannah Harbor Expansion Project.  I appreciate the Chamber’s support and look forward to working with them in the United States Senate.”

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