RNC to host debate watch party with Trump VP contenders for donors as selection nears

RNC to host debate watch party with Trump VP contenders for donors as selection nears

As speculation swirls around who former President Donald Trump will choose as his running mate, one of the potential VP picks will be at the debate in Atlanta tonight while several others are set to attend an RNC watch party for major donors.

South Carolina Senator Tim Scott will be at the debate, according to NewsNation. Meanwhile, the watch party hosted by former Georgia Senator Kelly Loeffler and her husband, businessman Jeff Sprecher, will be attended by former Housing and Urban Development Secretary Dr. Ben Carson, North Dakota Governor Doug Burgum, Senators Lindsey Graham, Marco Rubio, and JD Vance, in addition to Representatives Elise Stefanik, Byron Donalds, and Wesley Hunt, according to an invitation shared by The Daily Caller.

The chair of the Republican National Committee (RNC) Michael Whatley, as well as RNC co-chair – and Trump’s daughter-in-law – Lara Trump, will also attend the watch party.

The invitation states that the event is open to those who have contributed $100,000 to the Trump 47 Committee working to elect the former president to a second term. At the watch party, an additional $25,000 will get you “preferred … dinner seating with VIP surrogates” while $10,000 simply gets you a dinner seat.

Trump may appear at the watch party to give “potential post-debate remarks,” the invitation states, possibly depending on how the debate pans out for the former president.

Scott was included in early discussions of who might be chosen as Trump’s VP but has recently fallen off the radar. Trump has said that he has chosen who his running mate will be and some reporting suggests he could reveal his choice ahead of tonight’s debate. However, he could also stick to the original timeline and share the news at the start of the Republican National Convention next month.

JD Vance, Doug Burgum, and Marco Rubio are all possible contenders to be Trump’s running mate (Getty)
JD Vance, Doug Burgum, and Marco Rubio are all possible contenders to be Trump’s running mate (Getty)

Privately, Trump has narrowed his search to three contenders – Vance, Burgum, and Rubio, according to The New York Times. But he has also urged his advisors to keep up speculation about other possible candidates. Trump has also continued to ask for opinions on Carson and Scott.

Fox News announced this week that it would broadcast interviews with several contenders and their partners. Vance’s interview was shown on Wednesday, while Scott is scheduled to appear on Thursday, and Burgum’s interview is set to be shown on Monday. The interviews were initially planned to be shown later but the speculation regarding when an announcement might come prompted them to be moved up. The change in scheduling may have lost Rubio a chance to appear, The Times noted.

An advisor to a VP contender told the paper, “Every single piece of information I have is coming from reporters — it’s maddening.”

“This is torturous. But Trump is clearly enjoying himself,” another added.

Trump advisor Brian Hughes said in a statement to The Independent on Tuesday, “As President Trump has said himself, the top criteria in selecting a vice president is a strong leader who will make a great president for eight years after his next four-year term concludes.”

He added: “But anyone telling you they know who or when President Trump will choose his VP is lying unless that person is named Donald J. Trump.”

Graham initially blasted Trump during the 2016 campaign but soon came around and ultimately became one of his closest allies. The South Carolina senator said he was done with Trump after the 2021 Capitol riot — but soon rescinded on that opinion.

Stefanik, the chair of the House Republican Conference, has gone from a moderate New York Republican to full-on MAGA blowhard during Trump’s time as leader of the Republican Party. She is one of few women who have been part of speculations regarding who might be Trump’s VP but appears to have dropped out of serious consideration a few weeks ago. The same goes for South Dakota Governor Kristi Noem, who’s believed to have lost her chance when she revealed in a book that she shot and killed her misbehaving dog.

During the CNN debate, viewers in a number of media markets will see an ad outlining Biden’s history of “racially insensitive” statements, Hunt said in a statement.

Hunt, a Black Republican from Texas and West Point graduate, said in a statement that Biden’s career “is littered with racially insensitive comments, discriminatory policies, and self-lauded partnerships with segregationists.”

He added: “And until she was chosen to be his running mate in 2020, Kamala Harris agreed.”

The ad buy comes as the Trump campaign tries desperately to close the gap with Black voters.

Funded by Hunt’s Hellfire PAC, the ad will appear on CNN and Fox News in areas surrounding Atlanta, Philadelphia, Detroit, Charlotte, Milwaukee, and Pittsburgh – all cities in key states with large Black populations.