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Jim DeMint finds another outsider he likes

The first I heard of Ken Buck, a Republican candidate for Senate in Colorado, was when Rep. Ron Paul's (R-Tex.) Campaign for Liberty bought ads for him. Out of nowhere, Buck became moderately well-known. And now Sen. Jim DeMint (R-S.C.) has made Buck his newest project for the Senate Conservatives Fund. DeMint today:

I've been watching this race for several months to see which candidate would gain traction with Republican activists. Despite being little-known and under-funded, Ken has rapidly gained momentum. He surprised everyone when he won the precinct caucus straw poll in March, and now he is positioned to exceed all expectations at the state convention in May.

As Chris Cillizza reported today, Buck may have the convention to himself, because frontrunner Jane Norton, the former lieutenant governor, is ceding that battleground to him.

The meteoric rise of Marco Rubio in Florida has given DeMint a ton of credibility on endorsements, even as subsequent favorites like Chuck DeVore in California and Michael Williams in Texas have failed to break out -- DeVore because of a competitive primary, Williams because Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison (R-Tex.) declined to retire and open up the seat. But I see more and more candidates trumpet the nice things DeMint has to say about them. After Sarah Palin, no Republican politician gets as much attention when he spins the wheel o' endorsement.

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By David Weigel  |  April 14, 2010; 4:25 PM ET
Categories:  2010 Election  | Tags: Chuck DeVore, Jim DeMint, Kay Bailey Hutchison, Republican, Ron Paul, Sarah Palin, Straw poll, United States Senate  
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