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From the staff of the Tampa Bay Times

Trump, Huckabee will attend Florida GOP summit



Donald Trump and Mike Huckabee have both confirmed that they will attend the Republican Party of Florida’s Sunshine Summit in November, party chairman Blaise Ingoglia said Thursday.

That announcement comes days after Jeb Bush, Marco Rubio, Lindsey Graham and Bobby Jindal all confirmed they too will attend the newly-created Summit meant to get presidential candidates before GOP activist in the largest swingstate in the nation.

“The road to the White House goes through Florida, and our grassroots leaders and volunteers are ready to hear the candidates share their vision for the future of our nation," Ingoglia said.

By attending, the candidates avoid penalties that the RPOF was threatening to impose. New rules adopted recently  by the RPOF require candidates either to show up at the Nov. 13-14 Summit at the Rosen Shingle Creek resort in Orlando, write a $25,000 check to the state party, or gather 3,375 signatures from Florida Republicans in order for the party to place their names on Florida's presidential primary ballot in March.

It is all meant to boost attendance at the newly created Summit, which lacks a debate or straw poll that have been big draws at past state party-organized rallies during past presidential election cycles. The RPOF earlier this year announced it was changing the name of its event from what would have been Presidency 6 to the Sunshine Summit. Without a debate or straw poll, the RPOF has turned the event into a more conference-like structure like the Conservative Political Action Conference, or CPAC, where speakers addresses crowds separately over a period of days and hold breakout sessions and other events with their supporters.

[Last modified: Thursday, October 1, 2015 1:44pm]


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