Perry doubles down on Dewhurst in US Senate race

Headline Goes Here

AUSTIN, Texas - Gov. Rick Perry has forcefully reiterated his support for Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst in Texas' ferocious U.S. Senate race.

Perry said Friday that national tea party factions that have supported the lieutenant governor's opponent, former state Solicitor General Ted Cruz, "don't know anything about how Texas works."

Dewhurst and Cruz will square off in a runoff election July 31 for the Republican nomination to replacing retiring Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison. Neither won a major of the votes cast in a nine-candidate race during Tuesday's primary.

Perry has long supported Dewhurst. But asked if he might be jeopardizing his own credibility with grassroots groups for his continued support, Perry said out-of-sate tea party leaders should, "Come to Texas and learn how to do it right."

Copyright 2012 by The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.