In Nebraska, DeMint endorsed underdog Treasurer Don Stenberg
just as Attorney General Jon Bruning
began showing some signs of improvement, including raising a respectable sum of money and and bringing on some new advisers to right the ship. In addition, at around the same time, Democratic Sen. Ben Nelson
gave an interview to a local paper expressing some uncertainty about whether he was going to run for re-election, shifting attention temporarily away from Bruning's struggles and the GOP race.
In Ohio, DeMint's favorite is also the candidate favored by the establishment. But the timing of DeMint's endorsement was still notable. DeMint's endorsement of state Treasurer Josh Mandel
arrived just days after
former Ohio Secretary of State Ken Blackwell
, another conservative, announced that he would not run against the state treasurer in the GOP primary.
DeMint's endorsement of Neumann is not a surprise. He signaled his intention
to eventually get behind the former congressman in August, as he simultaneously took a subtle swipe at Thompson.
With DeMint's endorsement comes conservative cred and a fundraising boost. In 2010, we saw several DeMint backed candidates
-- including Sens. Marco Rubio
, R-Fla., Rand Paul
, R-Ky., and Mike Lee
, R-Utah, find success in contested primaries. But at the same time, DeMint's endorsement was not enough to help Ovide Lamontagne
, Chuck DeVore
and now-Rep. Marlin Stutzman
in New Hampshire, California and Indiana, respectively.