Sen. Tim Scott, r-S.C., on Feb. 9, 2015.
Bill Clark—CQ-Roll Call/Getty Images
By Charlotte Alter
February 2, 2016

South Carolina Senator Tim Scott is set to endorse his fellow Senator Marco Rubio following the Iowa caucuses, a GOP source familiar with the situation said, giving Rubio the backing of a key Republican leader in the state as the race moves past Iowa.

As the only black Republican in the Senate and a popular Senator with high approval ratings, Scott’s endorsement has been widely coveted by Republican presidential contenders, especially in the weeks leading up to the South Carolina primary later this month. News of the endorsement was first reported by Politico.

The move, which broke during the Iowa caucuses, could help Rubio consolidate support from Establishment-friendly Republicans following a likely win in Iowa by either Ted Cruz or Donald Trump. Mainstream GOP leaders hope that the multiple candidates competing in the so-called Establishment late — including Rubio, Jeb Bush, Chris Christie and John Kasich — will winnow after the New Hampshire primary next week.

Write to Charlotte Alter at charlotte.alter@time.com.

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