Rice, Huckabee among 2012 GOP convention speakers
By Felicia Sonmez,
Former secretary of state Condoleezza Rice and former Rogelio V. Solis AP
The two are some of the biggest names on a first-round list of speakers released by RNC chairman Reince Priebus on Monday morning.
Others slated to address the convention are Nikki Haley, the youngest sitting governor in the country and the first woman to serve as South Carolina governor; New Mexico Gov. Susana Martinez (R), the first Latina governor in the country; Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.), the GOP’s 2008 presidential nominee; Ohio Gov. John Kasich (R); and Florida Gov. Rick Scott (R).
In a statement, Priebus called the first round of announced speakers “some of our party’s brightest stars, who have governed and led effectively and admirably in their respective roles.”
Notably, the list contains only one sitting member of Congress (McCain); by contrast, five governors or former governors and one former administration official made the cut.
Many in the GOP base have pointed to Huckabee as an ideal V.P. candidate for Mitt Romney. But his appearance on the speakers list likely means that he is not on the presumptive GOP nominee’s shortlist.
Rice, too, has been floated as a potential running mate for Romney. Polls last month showed that she was the top choice for a plurality of GOP voters; her pro-abortion rights views, however, made her a candidate out-of-step with the GOP base.
The convention kicks off Aug. 27 in Tampa, Fla.