LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) — Former president Bill Clinton is endorsing Democrat Herb Rule in his race for the 2nd District congressional seat.

Clinton on Monday criticized Republican incumbent Tim Griffin having what he said is an "extreme Tea Party agenda."

Rule says he and Clinton have been friends since the 1970s when Clinton was Arkansas attorney general. Rule says he practiced law with Secretary of State Hillary Clinton when they were both working at the Rose Law Firm in Little Rock.

Griffin worked in former president George W. Bush's White House under political adviser Karl Rove. Rule has criticized Griffin for that role and for his stances on Social Security and health care.

Clinton says Rule will work to protect Social Security, Medicare and veteran's benefits.