Independent Sen. Angus King (Maine), who caucuses with Democrats, has endorsed Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) for reelection.

The endorsement, made following a higher education roundtable event the Maine senator attended in Nashville, will increase speculation about King’s own plans in the Senate. 

{mosads}”Sen. Alexander is the kind of person who we absolutely need in the United States Senate. He is someone who listens and who is interested in solving problems,” King said.

King told The Hill in April that he will decide after the elections which party he’ll caucus with in the next Senate. 

“I’ll make my decision at the time based on what I think is best for Maine,” King told The Hill.  

King has been active in campaigns this cycle, endorsing candidates from both parties, including Sens. Susan Collins (R-Maine) and Jeanne Shaheen (D-N.H.).

Alexander is not seen as particularly vulnerable in his contest with Democrat Gordon Ball, and the last public poll of the race, conducted at the end of September, showed him ahead by 19 points.

But Ball, a wealthy lawyer, has since invested $1 million of his own money into the race and gone on the attack against Alexander, calling him “chicken” for refusing to debate him.

The Democrat released an internal poll this week, conducted by Democratic firm Public Policy Polling, that showed Ball at 32 percent support with Alexander taking 45 percent and independent Tom Emerson with 13 percent.

Alexander spent much of the early months of his race working to shore up support on his right flank, and he secured the endorsements of a range of conservative stars, including former House Speaker Newt Gingrich (Ga.) and former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee.

He said he was thankful for King’s endorsement.

“I appreciate the endorsement of Sen. King. As a conservative senator who focuses not just on making a speech but also getting a result, I am glad to have the support of an independent like Sen. King who has a reputation of doing the same,” Alexander said.

Tags 2014 Tennessee Senate Race Angus King Gordon Ball Lamar Alexander
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