McDonnell will speak at the Kent County Republican Committee Lincoln Day dinner in Grand Rapids. He will spend the day in Richmond, where the General Assembly remains in session on a snowy holiday, before flying to Michigan, a week before the state’s primary.
McDonnell, one of the most popular governors in America and someone who is mentioned as a possible vice presidential candidate, had said for months that he preferred to back a governor or former governor. Romney became the last governor in the race after Texas Gov. Rick Perry, a friend of McDonnell’s, dropped out.
Only Romney and Rep. Ron Paul (Tex.) will appear on the Virginia primary ballot March 6. The other candidates — former House speaker Newt Gingrich and former senator Rick Santorum (Pa.) — did not qualify.
Romney has already announced a leadership team in Virginia, led by Lt. Gov. Bill Bolling. He also has support from former governor James Gilmore and several legislators. Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli has stayed out of the race.