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Members Oddly Shy in 2012 Endorsement Race

Chris Maddaloni/CQ Roll Call File Photo
Republican presidential candidates Newt Gingrich, Rick Perry and Mitt Romney (above) have racked up fewer Congressional endorsements than the 2008 GOP contenders had at this point last cycle. Romney leads the pack with 42 endorsements from Members of Congress.

A Republican strategist with House and Senate clients said institutional support has increasingly gravitated toward Romney as donors and high-level operatives conclude that he is positioned to win the nomination. According to Roll Call’s endorsement list, Romney has received the backing of 42 Members; Perry has garnered 14, including eight Texans; Gingrich has 6, among them four Georgians; and Paul has three, including his son, Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.). Rep. Dan Benishek (Mich.) is Cain’s single supporter. Bachmann has no publicly announced backers.

“Everything has been a little slower this time,” Blunt said. “I think Members are legitimately figuring how much of their own political capital they can transfer, and that is a post-2010 phenomenon in my view.”

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