Anti-abortion group's first 2014 endorsement

The Susan B. Anthony List, a conservative group that backs anti-abortion candidates, has made its first endorsement of the 2014 election cycle.

The group on Wednesday backed Florida state Senate Majority Leader Lizbeth Benacquisto, who is running in the special election to replace former Rep. Trey Radel (R-Fla.), who resigned last month.

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Benacquisto is in the race with at least five other Republicans, including former state Rep. Paige Kreegel and former Purdue University basketball star Curt Clawson.

Susan B. Anthony List President Marjorie Dannenfelser said in a statement the special election is a “critical opportunity to send an articulate, strong woman to Washington ahead of schedule.”

“State Senator Benacquisto’s extensive leadership experience will make her forceful and dynamic addition to the House Pro-life Women’s Caucus,” Dannenfelser said. “Women are uniquely qualified to defend the dignity of human life. Benacquisto beautifully embodies the legacy of Susan B. Anthony and the early suffragettes.”

Republicans are expected to easily keep the seat in the special election, sparked when Radel resigned after pleading guilty to cocaine possession and attending rehab for a month.

The primary for the seat is April 22, with the general election planned for June 24.

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