Endorsements sometimes fail to help Romney

March 8, 2012 at 10:18 AM
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WASHINGTON, March 8 (UPI) -- The Washington establishment's influence on Republican primary voters appears to be waning, a Republican senator from Missouri said.

Sen. Roy Blunt told Politico Super Tuesday primary results offer a perfect illustration of the GOP establishment's declining power.

Presidential hopeful Mitt Romney had establishment support in Oklahoma, North Dakota and Tennessee but lost all three states to former Sen. Rick Santorum of Pennsylvania.

"In 2000, members were absolutely certain that their endorsement was helpful," Blunt said. "Now I think, after the last couple years, members wonder how helpful it is."

Blunt said House and Senate members wonder how much political strength they can really transfer to candidates.

Sen. Kelly Ayotte of New Hampshire said what endorsements can provide are momentum, fundraising prowess and organizational strength.

"Here's my take on endorsements, including my own: Voters are going to make up their mind on their own," Ayotte said.

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