"What we are missing in the United States Senate is not just a good conservative vote, but the skills and leadership to articulate the conservative message, really engage the debate on the floor of the Senate beyond just taxes and spending," he said in a statement. "Ted CruzRafael (Ted) Edward CruzSenate Dems hold floor talk-a-thon against latest ObamaCare repeal bill Overnight Finance: CBO to release limited analysis of ObamaCare repeal bill | DOJ investigates Equifax stock sales | House weighs tougher rules for banks dealing with North Korea GOP state lawmakers meet to plan possible constitutional convention MORE is a tremendous orator and principled conservative who understands these issues at his core."

"I am excited to endorse his candidacy for United States Senate," Santorum continued, "and I look forward to working with his campaign in the weeks and months to come."

ADVERTISEMENT
But Cruz might not have months, or even weeks — if he can't hold Dewhurst below 50 percent, there will be no runoff election. The new poll, conducted by the Democratically affiliated Public Policy Polling, has Dewhurst leading with 46 percent support, Cruz at 29 percent and former Dallas Mayor Tom Leppert (R) at percent. In a hypothetical head-to-head, Dewhurst would start off with a 59 to 34 percent edge over Cruz.

A number of top conservatives and conservative groups are backing Cruz, including former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin (R), Sen. Jim DeMint (R-S.C.), Rep. Ron Paul (R-Texas), Sen. Rand PaulRandal (Rand) Howard PaulSenate Dems hold floor talk-a-thon against latest ObamaCare repeal bill Overnight Defense: Senate passes 0B defense bill | 3,000 US troops heading to Afghanistan | Two more Navy officials fired over ship collisions Lawmakers grapple with warrantless wiretapping program MORE (R-Ky.), the deep-pocketed Club for Growth and FreedomWorks. Dewhurst has the support of Texas Gov. Rick Perry (R) as well as former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee (R).