COLUMBIA, Mo. — In the hotly contested race to represent Missouri in the United States Senate, two livestock associations have chosen to back Josh Hawley.

On Friday, the MIssouri Pork Associations and the Missouri Cattlemen’s Association announced their support of the Show-Me State’s sitting Attorney General.

“Beef producers compose one of the largest industries in Missouri — and our cattle industry is the second largest in the nation. To secure an economy that serves both beef producers and consumers, we need a Senate candidate who will fight for us,” said Greg Buckman, the President of the Missouri Cattlemen’s Association.

“The Missouri Pork Association represents countless pork industry members from across the state. We focus on advancing the pork industry and engage on state and federal legislative concerns to ensure our members’ freedom to operate is protected,” said MPA Chairman Francis Forst. “We are confident Attorney General Josh Hawley will represent those interests and fight for Missouri pork producers and all of agriculture.”

Hawley along with 10 other Republican challengers are vying for the opportunity to face off against incumbent U.S. Senator Claire McCaskill. Hawley is seen by many as the likely winner of the Republican primary on August 7, 2018 with a wide range of endorsements including President Donald Trump.

“Pork farmers are critical to Missouri,” Hawley said. “I’m honored to receive the Missouri Pork Association’s support. I will always support policies that bolster the pork industry, a key driver of our state economy. Missouri is ready to send a new Senator to Washington – one who will speak up for pork farmers and farming families across this state.”

“I am humbled to receive the endorsement of the Missouri Cattlemen’s Association,” Hawley said. “They represent thousands of hardworking cattlemen across the state, and I am proud to be a voice for them in this race for U.S. Senate. For too long, Washington politicians like Claire McCaskill have ignored farming interests, and it is truly shameful. With new leadership, Missouri will do right by our farming families, including our cattlemen.”