In a statement Tuesday morning, Engler repeated Steelman's campaign theme, lauding her as a courageous "fighter" against the establishment, but said the biggest factor in his endorsement was the increasing criticism being lobbed by the Brunner campaign.
"The deciding factor that sent me to the Steelman camp was Mr. Brunner's recent attack ad distorting the truth about our responsible state government while hiding his own business record," Engler said. "The last thing we need in D.C. is another person who says one thing and does another."
Brunner's latest attack came in the form of two new websites launched Tuesday. SteelmanFacts.com and AkinFacts.com repeat the criticisms in Brunner's latest television ad directed at the two for votes in favor of debt spending. Brunner's repeated jabs come after Brunner's campaign released an internal poll claiming a significant margin over his opponents. Public polling shows Brunner and Steelman clashing for the frontrunner status.
Engler sent a letter to the Brunner campaign earlier in the month criticizing the ad and accused Brunner of not understanding the state's budgeting process.
Engler is another in a series of lawmakers to endorse Steelman, the former state Treasurer and a former state Senator.