- Associated Press - Friday, October 31, 2014

CORNELIUS, N.C. (AP) - Thom Tillis has received the endorsement of former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice in North Carolina’s close U.S. Senate race.

Tillis’ campaign released a statement Friday quoting Rice in which she calls the state House speaker “an effective leader who can work across the aisle to solve problems and make our government more accountable to the people.”

The Rice endorsement comes in the final days before Tillis’ election with Democratic Sen. Kay Hagan.

Rice worked in President George W. Bush’s administration, also serving as national security adviser. Rice’s backing comes as national security issues - including the Islamic State and Ebola - have taken a larger role in the campaign debate.

Former President Bill Clinton was scheduled to campaign with Hagan later Friday in Raleigh.

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