Mike Huckabee on Wednesday endorsed Attorney General Jon Bruning in his bid for Nebraska's 2012 Republican Senate nomination.
"I know he has the conservative record and proven leadership that Nebraskans need in the United States Senate," the former Arkansas governor and 2008 GOP presidential candidate said.
"I'm confident that he'll be a strong voice in the fight to balance the federal budget, eliminate the deficit and repeal the federal takeover of health care."
Huckabee, host of a weekend show on Fox News and best-known as a Christian conservative, recently announced he will not be a presidential candidate in 2012.
Meanwhile, RedState.com, a national conservative blog, announced its endorsement of state Treasurer Don Stenberg for the GOP Senate nomination.
"Conservatives going with Jon Bruning are making a terrible mistake," editor-in-chief Erick Erickson wrote, pointing to liberal columns written for the Daily Nebraskan when Bruning was a University of Nebraska law student.
"You don't put the new converts in the Senate where they have six years to go Chuck Hagel on us," Erickson stated. "Don Stenberg is my guy for this race."
The blog is a subsidiary of Eagle Publishing, Inc., which owns the weekly conservative magazine "Human Events."
Bruning has dismissed the columns he wrote when he was young, suggesting he has matured into a conservative family man whose conservative views are documented by his public record as a state senator and attorney general.
The winner of the GOP Senate primary next May will face Democratic Sen. Ben Nelson, who currently is on course to seek re-election.
State Sen. Deb Fischer of Valentine may enter the Republican contest this summer and Schuyler investment adviser Pat Flynn already is in the race.