Seventh Congressional District candidate Carolyn Bourdeaux has received a high-profile endorsement from a former Georgia secretary of state and U.S. senator in her bid to unseat Rep. Rob Woodall, R-Ga.

Former Sen. Max Cleland is backing Bourdeaux in the election. It’s one of the highest profile endorsements yet in a race that is expected to be high-profile. Bourdeaux is one of six Democrats running to defeat Woodall, who also faces a challenger, Shane Hazel, from within the Republican Party.

Bourdeaux has also been endorsed by former Ambassador Andrew Young and U.S. Rep. Hank Johnson, D-Ga.

“I am honored to endorse the candidacy of Carolyn Bourdeaux for Georgia’s 7th Congressional District,” Cleland said in a statement released by Bourdeaux’s campaign. “Her work to improve health care for millions of Georgians and her efforts to help the average Georgian through the Great Recession has been impressive to me.

“I’m sure it will be impressive to the citizens of the 7th Congressional District so much so that they will want to send her to Washington. To represent them. She has my full support.”

The profile of the race for this congressional seat rose last year after the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee named it one of its 2018 election targets. That puts a spotlight on who is donating to campaigns and who is endorsing which candidate.

Cleland served one term in the U.S. Senate, from 1997 to 2003, after serving four terms as Georgia’s secretary of state before that. He is also a Vietnam War veteran who lost both his legs and his right arm during the war. He served as the head of the U.S. Veterans Administrator while Jimmy Carter was president as well.

“I am delighted to have the support of Sen. Cleland,” Bourdeaux said in a statement. “His long standing commitment to public service is the sort of dedication we need to revitalize our democracy. One of the reasons I stepped up to run is because this is critical moment in American politics. We need to reclaim our values and our compassion.

“The people of this district deserve a functioning government in Washington and a representative that will listen to the diverse voices of this district and to fight for the interests of all its constituents.”

I'm a Crawford Long baby who grew up in Marietta. I eventually wandered away from home and attended the University of Southern Mississippi, in Hattiesburg, Miss., where I first tried my hand at majoring in film for a couple of years. And then political sc