Another national political figure has thrown backed a candidate in New York's special congressional election.

Former House Majority Leader Dick Armey (R-Texas) endorsed Doug Hoffman, the Conservative Party candidate running against centrist Republican nominee Dede Scozzafava and lawyer Bill Owens (D). The trio is vying for now-Army Secretary John McHugh's vacant seat. 

"We win when we are us. We lose when we are Democrat lite," he told RedState's Erick Erickson.

“We attract people by being small government conservatives," Armey continued. "Big Government Republicans, though they call themselves Big Government Conservatives, do not win. I would tell the Republican Party leadership it cannot win if it insists on recruiting and supporting candidates out of step with the voters."

With his endorsement, Armey broke with his co-engineer of the 1994 Republican Revolution, former House Speaker Newt Gingrich (R-Ga.), who backed Scozzafava last week.

The choice of Armey -- who is now the chairman of conservative group FreedomWorks -- helped further the intra-party divide in New York's 23rd district. 

Most national conservatives have shied away from Scozzafava, instead choosing to back Hoffman or stay out of the race.