Former Wyoming Sen. Alan Simpson has endorsed Jeb Bush for president. Simpson was a key component of the failed Simpson-Bowles plan to reduce the federal debt and deficit that proposed increased taxes.

The Wyoming Republican's endorsement comes just after Bush released his plans to reform federal entitlement programs, including Social Security and Medicare. Simpson is 84 years old.

"In order to assure needed benefits for current seniors and prosperity for the next generation any candidate will require absolute honesty and experienced leadership," Simpson said in a statement distributed by Bush's campaign. "As governor of Florida, Jeb reformed Medicaid to stabilize spending, empower patients, and improve quality of care. Jeb has enacted bold reforms, and he'll do it once again as President of the United States. Jeb keeps his promises."

Bush appears to be in a fierce competition for the endorsements of Republican politicians over 70 years old with Ohio Gov. John Kasich. Several prominent septuagenarians have pledged their support to Kasich, including former House Majority Leader Dick Armey, former Senate Majority Leader Trent Lott, former New York Sen. Alfonse D'Amato, and Alabama Gov. Robert Bentley. Bush meanwhile has former Wisconsin Gov. Tommy Thompson, 73, in his corner alongside Simpson.

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