The Washington Post

Gingrich backs Sen. Alexander as he tries to fend off primary challenge

Former House speaker Newt Gingrich speaks at the 2014 Republican Leadership Conference on May 30 in New Orleans. (Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

Former House speaker and presidential candidate Newt Gingrich (R) endorsed Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) Thursday, as Alexander tries to keep his his underdog primary challenger at bay.

In a statement, Gingrich emphasized Alexander's seniority, including the prospect of him chairing the Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions if Republicans retake the Senate this fall. Alexander is the ranking Republican on the committee.

“As a committee chairman next year, he will play a vital role in ending the Obama era in health and in education. We need Lamar's experience and shrewdness to fix Washington," Gingrich said in a statement.

Alexander faces a slate of primary challengers, most notably Joe Carr, a state legislator. Polls show Alexander does not appear to be in serious risk of losing. But he's taking no chances in an election cycle that has been hard to predict.

Carr supported Gingrich when he ran for president in 2012.

The primary is Aug. 7.

Sean Sullivan has covered national politics for The Washington Post since 2012.



Success! Check your inbox for details. You might also like:

Please enter a valid email address

See all newsletters

Show Comments
Most Read



Success! Check your inbox for details.

See all newsletters

Next Story
Wesley Lowery · June 26, 2014

To keep reading, please enter your email address.

You’ll also receive from The Washington Post:
  • A free 6-week digital subscription
  • Our daily newsletter in your inbox

Please enter a valid email address

I have read and agree to the Terms of Service and Privacy Policy.

Please indicate agreement.

Thank you.

Check your inbox. We’ve sent an email explaining how to set up an account and activate your free digital subscription.