The weekend of seminars and schmoozing at Deer Valley was the plum prize offered to the first 1,500 donors who gave at least $25,000 each to Romneyâ€™s campaign and fundraisers who brought in at least $100,000 by June 18. Another retreat is set to be held in the fall.
This weekend, guests will rub shoulders with some of the partyâ€™s biggest figures, including GOP strategistÂ Karl Rove, Sen.Â John McCain, former Secretary of StateÂ Condoleezza RiceÂ and former Florida Gov.Â Jeb Bush. Potential vice presidential picks such as Louisiana Gov.Â Bobby Jindal, Wisconsin Rep.Â Paul D. RyanÂ and South Dakota Sen.Â John ThuneÂ will be on hand. Romneyâ€™s wife, Ann, will host a tea with former Olympic figure skater Dorothy Hamill. There will be panel discussions on Israel, healthcare and the media, as well as a barbecue and golf.
â€œIt gives all of us across the country who know each other often only through conference calls to meet and compare notes,â€ said New York financier Lewis Eisenberg, a veteran GOP fundraiser who is a member of Romneyâ€™s national finance committee. â€œItâ€™s a chance to talk and rub shoulders with not only [Romney], but leaders of the party. Itâ€™s a big energizer.â€
It will be a busy weekend for top conservative donors: Aside from Romneyâ€™s retreat, the billionaire Koch brothers are set to host their own private gathering in the San Diego area this weekend for wealthy political givers, according to Politico. And the Republican Jewish Coalition — whose boardÂ includes casino magnateÂ Sheldon AdelsonÂ and other top GOP money men — is having its summer bash at a Beverly Hills hotel Sunday, featuring former Vice PresidentÂ Dick CheneyÂ and his daughter Liz.
Thatâ€™s forced some top Republican fundraisers to make some difficult choices: Houston investor Fred Zeidman said heâ€™ll be going to the RJC event, while his son, Jay, will attend the Deer Valley retreat. Adelson will be attending the Romney event, according to CBS News. Itâ€™s unclear if he will also make it to Beverly Hills.