Gov. Brewer makes first congressional endorsement, backs Salmon

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By Mike Gertzman By Mike Gertzman

PHOENIX -- Republican Gov. Jan Brewer is expected to make her first endorsement in this year's congressional races by backing former U.S. Rep. Matt Salmon.

According to people on his campaign, Brewer has agreed to help Salmon raise money as he looks to return to Congress after leaving the nation's capitol nearly 12 years ago.

"I had the pleasure of serving with Matt Salmon in the Arizona State Senate. Over the years, I have come to know him as an honest, hard-working, family man who is deeply committed to public service," said Brewer. "I am proud to endorse his candidacy for the United States Congress. His record of serving our country is distinguished by his commitment to always keeping his word and putting the people of Arizona first in his public service. I am proud to support Matt Salmon for Congress."

"It is a true honor to receive the support from our state's courageous leader, Governor Jan Brewer," stated former Congressman Salmon. "I served side by side with her in the state senate and witnessed firsthand that she means what she says and says what she means. Like me, Governor Brewer believes it's her duty to always fight for what is right, no matter the political consequences. I look forward to working closely with her to stop the infringement on state's rights by the federal government and creating a better and more prosperous Arizona."

In picking the longtime East Valley lawmaker, Brewer overlooks former House Speaker Kirk Adams in the Republican primary fight for Arizona's new 5th Congressional District.

Adams ran the House when Brewer took over the state in 2009, a time marked by highly contentious battles between the GOP-controlled Legislature and the governor's office.

Many involved in Arizona politics expected the race between Adams and Salmon to be one of the most highly watched in the state this year.

But the contest hasn't grabbed the kind of attention as other races like the one in Arizona's 6th Congressional district which pits two sitting congressmen, Republican Reps. Ben Quayle and David Schweikert, against each other.

Look for more ads from the Salmon campaign. His political handlers say he's throwing down more money on television commercials that will air on cable networks like the Republican friendly Fox News Channel as well as the History Channel and ESPN.