Posted at 11:21 AM ET, 03/13/2012

Alabama Gov. Bentley votes for Rick Santorum

Alabama Gov. Robert Bentley (R) voted Tuesday morning for Rick Santorum, the former Pennsylvania senator’s campaign announced via Twitter.


Former senator Rick Santorum (R-Pa.). (Billy Weeks/Reuters)
“Honored to learn this morning on @rickandbubba that AL Gov. @GovernorBentley cast his vote for me and joined the fight!” @RickSantorum tweeted, referring to the popular “Rick and Bubba” radio show.

Santorum’s camp also tweeted a photo of Bentley standing with Santorum and his wife, Karen.

Bentley, who won election in 2010, had been publicly neutral in the presidential primary until Tuesday. News of his vote for Santorum could give the former senator a boost as voters head to the polls in the Yellowhammer State today.

Bob Riley, Bentley’s predecessor, last week endorsed former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney (R) in the race.

Jeremy King, a spokesman for Bentley, said that the governor views Santorum “as the most conservative candidate in the Republican presidential primary.” But he noted that Bentley “has chosen not to publicly endorse a candidate” and that he “believes a vote is a personal decision that should be based on a voter’s values and principles, not on someone else’s opinion.”

“The governor was asked as a voter who he would vote for, and he answered that he had personally chosen to vote for Rick Santorum,” King said. “The Republican primary features a strong pool of candidates, and Governor Bentley has made it clear he will fully support the Republican nominee chosen by the people.”

This post has been updated since it was first published.

By  |  11:21 AM ET, 03/13/2012

 
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