State Senate speaker, 18 other senators endorse Blackburn

Rep. Marsha Blackburn (R-TN) is surrounded by reporters after leaving the office of Speaker of the House Paul Ryan (R-WI) at the U.S. Capitol March 23, 2017 in Washington, DC. Ryan and House GOP leaders postponed a vote on the American Health Care Act after it became apparent they did not have enough votes to pass the legislation that would repeal and replace Obamacare. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

NASHVILLE, Tenn. — Tennessee’s Senate leader and 18 other Republican state senators have endorsed U.S. Rep. Marsha Blackburn in her U.S. Senate bid.

Blackburn’s campaign announced the endorsements Wednesday as U.S. Sen. Bob Corker considers whether he wants to reverse course and face Blackburn in a Republican primary.

More state House members and conservative groups have also recently said they support Blackburn.

Senate Speaker Randy McNally said Wednesday it’s time for all Republicans to rally around Blackburn.

Corker’s camp has said he’s “listening closely” to those encouraging him to reconsider because the contest could sway the Republican-led Senate’s thin majority.

Aside from U.S. Rep. Stephen Fincher, who left the Senate race last week, almost no Republicans have publicly called for Corker to run again.

Former Gov. Phil Bredesen is the expected Democratic nominee.