Maine independent King endorses GOP Sen. Alexander

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – Independent U.S. Sen. Angus King of Maine says he is endorsing Republican incumbent Lamar Alexander in Tennessee’s Senate race, but is still awaiting the results of elections nationwide before deciding which party to caucus with.

King joined Alexander at Lipscomb University in Nashville on Friday for a discussion about efforts to simplify federal student loan applications.

King, who earlier endorsed Republican Sen. Susan Collins of Maine and Democratic Sen. Jeanne Shaheen of New Hampshire, told reporters afterward that he is supporting Alexander because he considers him a problem solver in a dysfunctional Senate.

Republicans need to pick up six seats to gain a Senate majority.

Alexander, a former Tennessee governor and presidential candidate, is seeking a third Senate term. He is being challenged by Democrat Gordon Ball, a Knoxville attorney.