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Republican Rep. Jim Banks scores major endorsement for Senate run from former Trump official

FIRST ON FOX: An Indiana Republican congressman running for Senate secured a major endorsement from a former Cabinet secretary.

Fox News Digital has learned that former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo is endorsing Indiana Republican Rep. Jim Banks for Senate.

Banks is running to replace outgoing Senator Mike Braun, R-Ind., who is running for the Hoosier State governorship.

‘Jim Banks is the America-first leader we need in the United States Senate,’ Pompeo said in a statement obtained by Fox News Digital. ‘Jim served our nation in Afghanistan, served Indiana in the State Senate, and fought unabashedly for a strong America in Congress.’

Pompeo said Banks’ ‘conservative record is clear, and now more than ever, we need fighters like him who won’t back down on securing our border, strengthening our military, and pushing back against Biden’s woke agenda.’

‘It is an honor to have Secretary Pompeo’s support in our campaign to bring our Hoosier conservative values to the United States Senate,’ Banks said.

‘I am grateful for his hard and important work to champion our conservative, America-first values on the world stage during the Trump Administration and beyond,’ he continued.

‘I hope to fight for these same principles in the Senate and am grateful for his support,’ Banks added.

Banks has been the favorite in the race for months, having snagged endorsements from a litany of local, state and federal Republicans.

Earlier this month, Banks told Fox News Digital that he would ‘welcome competition’ in the race, but did not hesitate to cut deep into his new opponent’s perceived flaws — including an ongoing lawsuit over accusations of price gouging and coordinating to maximize profits. 

John Rust, chairman of Rose Acre Farms and a sixth-generation Indiana egg farmer, recently announced a long-shot bid for the spot being vacated by current Sen. Mike Braun, R-Ind., who is running for governor. 

Banks accused his primary challenger for Indiana’s open Senate seat of trying ‘to screw’ Indiana families during the height of inflation.

‘This fella has a lot of obstacles overcome to actually get on the ballot. But if he does, we’ll have a spirited race and talk about the differences between my proven conservative track record and his lifetime of voting for Democrats,’ Banks said in an interview at the National Republican Senatorial Committee. 

‘I find that to be just disgusting that this guy, and his family, would be a part of a scheme to screw people in Indiana who are trying to put food on the table, and they made it even harder on them during COVID to do that,’ Banks said. ‘His business is being sued for it. I’m going to make sure that a guy like that never goes anywhere near the United States Senate.’

Rust, who spoke with Fox News Digital last month, said at the time he was a lifelong conservative who only voted for Democrats when he ‘knew people personally’ who were running in left-wing primaries.

But Banks is still considered the favorite for the deep-red state’s Senate seat. He told Fox News Digital that Indianans want a senator who’s committed to restoring Trump administration policies on China, the border and the economy, among other issues. 

Get the latest updates from the 2024 campaign trail, exclusive interviews and more at our Fox News Digital election hub.

Fox News Digital’s Elizabeth Elkind contributed reporting.

This post appeared first on FOX NEWS

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