Huffpost Politics

Jim DeMint: 'I Will Not Endorse A Candidate'

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Sen. Jim DeMint (R-S.C.) announced definitively Monday that he will not endorse a GOP presidential candidate.

"I do not have a favorite in this race and I will not endorse a candidate," he wrote in an email to supporters. "I have complimented several of our candidates when they spoke out on conservative issues, but the media has suggested that I favor one over the others," he said. He added that all of the GOP candidates are "far superior" to President Barack Obama.

DeMint had previously indicated that he was not going to make an endorsement, but the email shuts the door.

"I have the ability to raise $10 (million) or $15 million to elect some senators and that's how I think I can help the next president. So that's what I want to do," he recently told the AP. "As soon as I get involved with one (presidential) candidate, I've got 80 percent of my supporters mad at me."

However, he has said that he thinks former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney will win the state's Jan. 21 primary and said he was "concerned" about GOP attacks against him over his tenure at Bain Capital.

DeMint endorsed Romney in the 2008 presidential race, who lost the state's primary and the GOP nomination to Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.). Romney came in fourth in the state. Some of DeMint's allies have endorsed Romney in 2012.

DeMint's endorsements and fundraising for 2010 U.S. Senate candidates through his Senate Conservatives Fund PAC helped elect Marco Rubio and Rand Paul over establishment GOP candidates. Other candidates, like Christine O'Donnell of Delaware and Ken Buck of Colorado, won their primaries but lost in the general election.

Ahead of Saturday's crucial primary, Gov. Nikki Haley (R) has endorsed Romney along with state Treasurer Curtis Loftis, while Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) and Tea-Party favorite Rep. Tim Scott (R-S.C.) have not endorsed.

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