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POLITICAL NOTEBOOK: Sen. Santorum endorses Mike Collins in congressional race

Mike Collins

Mike Collins

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Mike Beaudreau

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P.K. Martin

Mike Collins now has two former presidential candidates backing him in his race for U.S. House District 10.

Just weeks after Newt Gingrich leant his support, Collins got the backing of former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum in his bid for the GOP nomination, which will be decided in a July 22 runoff.

“Mike Collins is a rock-solid conservative who will be guided by the U.S. Constitution in Congress,” said Santorum. “Most importantly, Mike has laid out a bold plan of conservative policies that will push back overbearing federal regulations, revitalize the entrepreneurial spirit and provide more opportunities for blue collar Americans. We need more conservative businessmen like Mike Collins in Congress.”

Collins, the son of former U.S. Rep. Mac Collins, said he appreciates the support.

“Sen. Santorum is a leading voice for our conservative cause,” Collins said. “He’s a man of faith with unwavering convictions and I’m honored to have his support.”

The business man will square off on runoff ballots against radio host Jody Hice for the district, which includes much of eastern Gwinnett.

Senate District 9 endorsements and debates

Mike Beaudreau and P.K. Martin have dueling endorsements in recent days, in their race for the State Senate District 9 GOP primary runoff.

Beaudreau announced an endorsement by Georgia Carry, an influential organization in the 2nd Amendment rights.

“I am deeply honored to be endorsed by Georgia Carry,” the former county commissioner said. “As the new state senator from District 9, I will preserve all of our Second Amendment rights and I will proudly fight for the freedoms given to us by the Constitution of this great country.”

Martin, a former Lawrenceville councilman, got the backing of state Sen. Renee Unterman, who was one of the biggest allies of Don Balfour, the incumbent the two beat out in May’s primary.

“I am endorsing P.K. Martin because we need him in the State Senate, Unterman said. “He is a proven conservative we can trust to join us in passing conservative reforms. More importantly, we need someone in the Senate who has the ability to work with others to get things done. P.K. Martin is the proven choice. I encourage the people of District 9 to support him in the runoff.”

Martin said, “I am happy to have the support of Senator Unterman in my campaign, and I look forward to working with her in the Senate to continue to improve Gwinnett County and this state. She knows that I have a record of working with the people of this community to get things done. I know how to listen, and I have proven throughout my years in public service that I am a true conservative who is committed to our conservative principles. That is the record I will continue in the Senate.”

On Monday, the two will square off in a debate hosted by the Gwinnett GOP.

The event is set for 7 to 8:30 p.m. at Lilburn City Hall.

Political Notebook appears in the Thursday and Sunday editions of the Gwinnett Daily Post.

Camie Young can be reached via email at camie.young@gwinnettdailypost.com.

For archived columns, go to www.gwinnettdailypost.com/politics.