Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney says he appreciates getting a boost from a personal hero, former President George H.W. Bush.

When asked which Republican presidential candidate he supports, Bush told his hometown newspaper, the Houston Chronicle, that Romney is the best choice. That casts aside Texas Gov. Rick Perry, who led the GOP field in early fall.

Bush said he likes Perry but he seems to have lost momentum.

While campaigning in New Hampshire, Romney thanked Bush and said his backing means a lot to him personally. He said the 41st president is a hero to him.

In an item posted on the paper's website Thursday, Bush said he supports Romney because of his "stability, experience and principles."

Romney visited Bush in Houston earlier this month.