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US NEWS CAIN 13 ABA.jpgRepublican U.S. Senate candidate Dan Hughes is playing up his support for Herman Cain, touting his endorsement of the former presidential hopeful's "9-9-9" tax plan in a fundraising appeal.

An email to supporters highlights the Southern California businessman's endorsement of Cain's tax plan, which would replace the current tax structure with a federal tax rate of 9 percent on incomes, businesses and sales.The message, which listed Cain as the sender, includes a quote from a previous release announcing that Hughes had promised to "read the legislation once it is drafted and push to enact '9-9-9.'"

Hughes is one of 23 candidates -- 14 Republicans, five Democrats and four from third parties -- challenging Sen. Dianne Feinstein this year.

"Politicians like Sen. Feinstein are part and parcel of the 'Goliath' that has become our government. That is why we are building an 'Army of Davids' to get our power back from the government," Cain, who has not endorsed Hughes, said in the statement cited in the email. "By signing his name to '9-9-9' , Mr. Hughes has demonstrated his willingness to be a lieutenant in this 'Army of Davids'."

The email, sent Monday, asks recipients to sign up as volunteers or contribute between $5 and $2,500 to Hughes' campaign.

Cain's catchy "9-9-9" plan was the source of much buzz and support for his candidacy, which ended last year amid allegations of sexual misconduct in the past. While the former Godfather's Pizza executive touted the proposal as a simple tax cut, some economists counter that the changes would lower taxes for the wealthy but result in a net tax increase for a majority of Americans.

Hughes is one of 24 candidates running for U.S. Senate on the June ballot. The two candidates who receive the most votes, regardless of party affiliation, will advance to the November general election.

Despite a dip in the polls, Feinstein is favored to win re-election in November.

PHOTO CREDIT: Republican Presidential candidate Herman Cain speaks at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C., Monday, October 31, 2011. (Olivier Douliery/ Abaca Press/ MCT)

Editor's Note: This post was updated to provide the correct party breakdown of the 23 candidates challenging Feinstein.Updated 1 p.m., April 4, 2012.


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