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Former Va. Gov. Gilmore endorses Romney

Thursday - 1/12/2012, 2:07pm  ET

RICHMOND, Va. - Former Virginia Gov. Jim Gilmore has endorsed Mitt Romney's Republican presidential primary bid.

Gilmore, who was governor from 1998 to 2002, announced his support for the former Massachusetts governor Thursday. Gilmore called Romney a conservative who can not only beat President Barack Obama but put conservative values into action.

Romney and Texas Congressman Ron Paul are the only Republicans who qualified for a spot on Virginia's March 6 GOP presidential primary ballot. Texas Gov. Rick Perry has been joined by Newt Gingrich, Jon Huntsman and Rick Santorum in a federal lawsuit challenging Virginia primary qualifying rules.

Gilmore served briefly as Republican National Committee chairman 10 years ago under President George W. Bush. A Gilmore political protégé, Lt. Gov. Bill Bolling, is chairman of Romney's campaign in Virginia.

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