Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Trump Still On for Republican Party Dinner, For Now

The Decision: What is going on over at the Republican Party of Iowa?

I've never had a problem getting return phone calls for there, but I sure have the past 2 days. It's all about the Donald. Trump is supposed to headline the party's Lincoln Day Dinner June 10th. But since he's no longer a possible presidential candidate (and already bailing out of other events like the Indy 500), plus there's that f-bomb speech in Las Vegas from last month, is he the right guy to still headline the dinner? Trump did help sell a record number of tickets, according to the party previously. I don't know how many exactly, since I haven't heard back from the party. Senator Chuck Grassley told me he still supports Trump as the guest. Governor Terry Branstad's spokesman also told me the governor still supports Trump, if that's the person the party wants.

The party sent out this statement on Monday about Trump:

Iowa GOP Spokesman Casey Mills issued the comment below regarding the status of the June 10 Lincoln Dinner.

"While our invitation to Mr. Trump never hinged on a potential Trump candidacy, Iowans responded enthusiastically and with great interest in his appearance at our annual Lincoln Day Dinner. Today, it is our understanding that Mr. Trump is reassessing his commitment. We anticipate a final decision on his June 10 appearance will be made tomorrow and we will make further comments at that time."

Tomorrow (Tuesday) has now come and gone with no announcement. So has today (Wednesday). Still nothing from the party.

Trump's spokesman, Michael Cohen, told us this afternoon Trump will call Republican Party Chairman Matt Strawn next Monday to discuss his availability. That's May 23rd, 18 days before the dinner. If Trump is out, that would make it REALLY difficult for the party to find another big-name guest (if the person isn't a present candidate/possible candidate) who would make the big crowd happy.

I've been asking around for replacement ideas. The most popular choices Republicans' recommend have been:

Indiana Governor Mitch Daniels (his spokeswoman told me early this evening no one has called to invite Daniels as a Trump replacement)

New Jersey Governor Chris Christie

Wisconsin Representative Paul Ryan

Florida Senator Marco Rubio

If you get on the Channel 13 Facebook page, there are dozens of other ideas...including Mike Huckabee (would he still sell tickets now that he's disappointed his Iowa supporters?), Trump--not the man, just his hair, and even Bob Saget. What does that guy do these days after Full House emptied out?

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