Mitt Romney claimed the endorsement today of a veteran US senator from the Deep South, Thad Cochran of Mississippi.
"At this moment our nation faces unprecedented challenges, and Governor Romney has the experience, vision and values needed to strengthen our country for future generations," Cochran said in a statement issued by the Romney campaign. "Governor Romney is a man of outstanding judgment and strong character."
Cochran had initally endorsed Fred Thompson, but the former Tennessee senator withdrew from the race on Tuesday.
The backing from Cochran, the sixth sitting Republican senator to join Romney's team, should help Romney build his case that he has national appeal in the GOP.