The Tea Party Express plans to put some of its resources and political muscle into Wisconsin in the coming days to support candidate Mark Neumann in the Republican primary for the open U.S. Senate seat.
Amy Kremer, chairman of the group, which is the nation’s largest tea party political action committee, made a trip to Wisconsin Friday to formally endorse Neumann at campaign stops in Milwaukee, Green Bay and Madison.
At the Milwaukee County War Memorial stop Friday morning, Kremer said Neumann has proven he "will fight for what's right and stand on principle" and he understands what she calls the "problems" in Washington.
"We believe that he is the true conservative that can win this seat and go to Washington to represent the people," Kremer said, with a statue of Abraham Lincoln looking down behind her. "He's going to protect our Constitutional freedoms and liberties. ... Washington is the problem, not the answer."
This endorsement comes after a recent that shows Neumann, a businessman and former congressman, to former Gov. Tommy Thompson and businessman Eric Hovde, who also has some Tea Party support in the state, in the Aug. 14 primary race.
Kremer dismissed the suggestion that the Tea Party Express might be better off supporting Thompson or Hovde, who have generally polled better than Neumann throughout the race.
"A poll is just a snapshot in time," she said. "It's not money or a poll that wins elections, it's people on the ground, the heart and soul of America ... that will go out and work for it."
"This is another third-party verification that folks all over the country and all over the state of Wisconsin are coming home to the proven conservative in this race," Neumann said.
"We believe that he is the true conservative that can win this seat and go to Washington to represent the people."
The Tea Party Express is turning to Wisconsin after it helped Texas GOP Senate nominee and Tea Party favorite Ted Cruz deliver a blowing defeat to Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst, who was supported by Rick Perry, in Tuesday's primary runoff there.
There was no direct mention of the other Wisconsin candidates on Friday morning. Kremer did acknowledge there are other conservatives in the race, and she does not mean to "bash" them, but she called Neumann the best choice.
Kremer said the Tea Party Express will jump in next week and devote monetary resources to this race and produce ads supporting Neumann, in a race that has already been . She did not disclose how much would be spent.
In addition, the group is planning a three-day bus tour in Wisconsin next week in support of Neumann.
The group has organized rallies throughout the country that have featured speakers such as Sarah Palin, Joe the Plumber, Michelle Bachmann and Ann Coulter. It visited Wisconsin prior to the June 5 recall elections and in 2011 to support the Republican senators targeted for recalls.
The winner in the Aug. 14 primary will go on to face Democratic candidate Tammy Baldwin in November.