A GOP source tells TPM that the National Republican Congressional Committee is going to get behind Conservative Party candidate Doug Hoffman in the NY-23 special election, now that moderate Republican nominee Dede Scozzafava has dropped out.
Hoffman is in a close race with Democrat Bill Owens, and Scozzafava suspended her campaign today after polls showed her in third place. With the NRCC’s backing, Hoffman will go from insurgent third-party candidate to being the de facto new Republican nominee (though Scozzafava will still be on the ballot as the GOP’s candidate).
NRCC chairman Pete Sessions (R-TX) will have a statement out shortly.
Late Update: The NRCC has released a joint statement — co-signed by Sessions, House Minority Leader John Boehner (R-OH) and Minority Whip Eric Cantor (R-VA) — backing Hoffman. It is available after the jump.
Joint Statement from House Republican Leadership Regarding NY-23 Special Election
Washington – The National Republican Congressional Committee (NRCC) today released the following joint statement from House Republican Leader John Boehner, House Republican Whip Eric Cantor, and NRCC Chairman Pete Sessions regarding the the special election in New York’s 23rd Congressional District:
“As the House stands on the cusp of the forthcoming vote on a trillion-dollar healthcare reform measure, it is vital that we unify behind a candidate that will support reining in massive government spending and work with Republicans in Congress to restore fiscal sanity and propose thoughtful measures to get our nation’s economy on the right track.
“With Assemblywoman Scozzafava suspending her campaign, we urge voters to support Doug Hoffman’s candidacy in New York’s 23rd Congressional District.
“He is the only active candidate in the race who supports lower taxes, fiscal responsibility and opposes Nancy Pelosi’s agenda of government-run healthcare, more government and less jobs.
“We look forward to welcoming Doug Hoffman into the House Republican Conference as we work together for the good of our nation.”