A powerful conservative group has endorsed Republican challenger Matt Bevin in Kentucky's U.S. Senate race.
The move by the Senate Conservatives Fund came two days after the incumbent, Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell, finalized a budget compromise with Democrats to end an impasse that had led to a partial shutdown of the federal government.
The group, founded by former Sen. Jim DeMint, was sharply critical of the budget deal. Executive director Matt Hoskins called Bevin "a true conservative" who will fight to stop overspending, bailouts and rising debt.
Hoskins said his group, which has already spent some $340,000 to run a TV ad in Kentucky criticizing McConnell, polled 70,000 of its members and that 90 percent preferred to endorse Bevin.