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Ron Paul's Replacement Won't Be The Next Ron Paul

Meet Randy Weber, a relatively normal Republican.

Posted on June 18, 2012, at 5:25 p.m. ET

Ron Paul endorsed today in the race to occupy his congressional seat in Texas once he's retired, but he hasn't picked an ideological successor — there are none competing for his office. Instead, he's gone with Randy Weber, a state representative and owner of an air-conditioning business who's picked up the bulk of marquee endorsements, including Governor Rick Perry.

"There may be no stronger compliment than to have the current office holder, the people’s choice; give you their endorsement to succeed them when they leave," the Weber campaign writes on its website.

Unlike other candidates Paul has endorsed across the country, like Mark Neumann in Wisconsin or Thomas Massie in Kentucky, Weber's views don't align with Paul's on some signature libertarian issues. He's a more mainstream conservative Republican, whose platform doesn't include Paul issues like auditing the Federal Reserve or relaxing drug policy.

"As a small business owner, Randy understands how excessive regulation and reckless overspending by government is destroying jobs and squeezing our community. Randy Weber will be a strong and consistent voice to get Washington off our backs so we in the Fourteenth District can work and grow," reads Paul's statement in the endorsement announcement.

Paul is expected to join Weber on the trail and to "promote Weber’s candidacy to his army of supporters."

"Randy Weber's moral character, conservative record and commitment to constituent service set him apart," said Paul campaign manager Jesse Benton. "Dr. Paul is confident his friends and neighbors will be in good hands with Randy."

Asked what form the campaign's support would take, Benton said "Details are yet to be decided, but we will help make sure Randy wins."

Weber was traveling on Monday and not available for interviews. He will face a runoff on July 31 against Felicia Harris, a lawyer from Pearland, Texas.

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