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FIRST ON FOX: A former NASCAR driver-turned-GOP congressional candidate in Maine received an endorsement from the new House speaker.

Fox News Digital has learned House Speaker Mike Johnson, R-La., endorsed GOP congressional candidate Austin Theriault in his quest to flip the seat held by Democratic Maine Rep. Jared Golden.

Johnson told Mainers to get out and vote for Theriault, a former NASCAR driver, calling him a successful, “hardworking public servant.”

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“Mainers, please send Austin Theriault to Congress so he can fight for you,” Johnson told Fox News Digital Tuesday. “I’m endorsing Austin because he’s a hardworking public servant with a strong track record of success.

“His rural Maine values have shaped him and his character, and I know he’ll do everything he can to make life better for Mainers. Austin will hold Joe Biden and Jared Golden — both failed leaders — accountable, and he’s the best candidate to beat Jared Golden in November.

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“Elect a winner, Mainers — elect Austin Theriault.”

Theriault, a Maine state representative, told Fox News Digital, “Speaker Johnson is fighting for rural conservative values,” and he appreciates the support.

Mike Johnson at GOP presser

“Joe Biden and Jared Golden have failed to make life better for Mainers,” Theriault said. “I look forward to fighting for the working class by restoring energetic, effective and aggressive leadership to Maine’s 2nd congressional district.

“Join our fight to help Maine’s working class get ahead. It’s time to stand up and stop the out-of-touch elites from continuing to hurt our communities and proactively fight for a better and more prosperous future.”

Theriault’s endorsement comes as he seeks the seat held by Golden in a race expected to be one of the most competitive House races this cycle.

The former NASCAR driver announced last week on Twitter his campaign “raised more than $355K in the first 3-month fundraising period” since he entered the race.

Jared Golden

Theriault has been vocal in his campaign on issues facing America, including speaking out against “pro-Hamas” protesters as well as the effort to remove former President Trump from the primary ballot in Maine. 

Johnson is not the only House Republican leader to endorse Theriault’s House candidacy.

House Republican Conference chairwoman Elise Stefanik, R-N.Y., threw her support behind Theriault in December.

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