Republican presidential hopeful Jon Huntsman will be in Richmond Wednesday morning for a private fundraiser in the swing state of Virginia, we have been told.
Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell, chairman of the Republican Governors Association, will stop by Huntsman’s breakfast fundraiser at the Country Club of Virginia.
McDonnell and the former Utah governor will speak alone before the event, McDonnell spokesman Tucker Martin confirmed late Tuesday.
“The governor looks forward to welcoming Governor Huntsman to Virginia, and [Huntsman is] running a positive, ideas-driven campaign,’’ Martin said. McDonnell is “always pleased to see candidates taking a strong interest in the commonwealth. This state will play an important role in the 2012 race.”
He has not said when — or if — he would endorse. But with an eye toward the vice presidential spot on his party’s ticket, it would make sense to stay out of the contest as long as possible. He supported former
senator Fred Thompson in 2008.
McDonnell has spoken to former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney and former House Speaker Newt Gingrich several times and talks to Texas Gov. Rick Perry often. He has spoken to Huntsman, former Godfather’s Pizza CEO Herman Cain and former Pennsylvania senator Rick Santorum once over the years.
Romney was in Richmond last week to raise money, but McDonnell canceled his appearance at his fundraiser after the shooting at Virginia Tech.
Romney and Gingrich came to Virginia to help McDonnell during his 2009 gubernatorial campaign.