Rep. Matt SalmonMatt SalmonWhat gun groups want from Trump Ryan delays committee assignments until 2017 GOP lawmakers praise Trump for Taiwan call MORE (R-Ariz.) on Thursday threw his support behind Marco RubioMarco RubioRubio wades into Trump-Lewis feud 19 companies that Trump has tweeted about Ex-Dem gov: I would have picked Giuliani over Tillerson MORE’s presidential bid, according to a statement from the Florida senator's campaign.
Salmon, who’s a key player in the Tea Party, endorsed Rubio as a candidate with strong national security bona fides who can take on the threat of the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS).
"More than any other candidate, Marco Rubio has the right ideas to take on the threats we face around the world," Salmon said in the statement, which was provided to The Arizona Republic.
"As a member of the Intelligence and Foreign Relations committees, [Rubio] has seen firsthand the importance of identifying our enemies and standing by our friends, and he knows what it takes to win the war against ISIS," he added.
Salmon, who represents a district near the border with Mexico, also touted Rubio’s stance on immigration and border security.
"When Marco Rubio is president, he will cancel President Obama's unconstitutional executive amnesty, sanctuary cities will lose their federal funding, and criminal aliens will be immediately deported," Salmon said. "As a border-state representative in Congress, I trust him to solve these problems once and for all."
After a strong third-place finish at Monday night’s Iowa caucuses, Rubio has been looking to unite establishment and Tea Party support heading into the New Hampshire primary on Feb. 9. On Wednesday night, Rubio overtook GOP rival Jeb Bush in the number of congressional endorsements.
Since Monday's caucuses, the Florida senator has landed six endorsements, including one from Sen. Tim ScottTim ScottTrump education pick to face Warren, Sanders Black GOP senator: Trump-Lewis feud 'verbal Russian roulette' Armstrong Williams op-ed: Dems, not Jeff Sessions, have the real race problem MORE (R-S.C.), which is expected to boost Rubio in the South Carolina primary on Feb. 20.