Leader of Republican National Committee heads to Park City this month
February 3, 2012
The chairman of the Republican National Committee, charged with crafting a strategy to win the White House and ensure majorities in both houses of Congress on Election Day, is scheduled to visit Park City later in February.
Reince Priebus, who was elected chairman a little more than a year ago, is set to visit Utah on Feb. 25 and Feb. 26. Thomas Wright, the chairman of the state Republican Party, said Priebus will likely spend time in Park City on both of the days he is in Utah.
Wright said there will be at least one fundraiser scheduled in Park City. Details, including the admission price, had not been set by the end of the week. Wright, though, said no public events are planned while Priebus is in Park City.
The state chairman said Priebus will be raising money for GOP congressional candidates. Wright said the Republicans want the party to capture the full slate of the state’s congressional districts in November.
"It’s his commitment to making sure the party is effective" across the U.S., Wright said of the upcoming visit, calling Priebus a "very effective chairman."
Wright does not believe Priebus has visited Utah since he became the chairman.
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Priebus will arrive in Park City as Republicans appear to be emboldened, particularly in Utah. The state party sees it as being a possibility that the GOP will win each of the state’s four congressional districts. The Republicans have long had difficulty capturing one of the seats, but a redrawn district has the party more confident.
Meanwhile, Mitt Romney, the front-runner for the party’s presidential nomination, has deep ties to Utah. State Republicans hope Romney’s presence on the ballot, starting with the primary election in June, will energize party members.
Priebus would be the second consecutive chairman of the Republican National Committee to visit Park City. Michael Steele, who preceded Priebus in the position, made a local stop in the spring of 2010.
Steele led a GOP delegation to Utah as Salt Lake City unsuccessfully competed to host the 2012 Republican National Convention. Steele did not make a public appearance while he was in Park City, either. The Republican delegation took a short bus tour of Park City and stopped at Stein Eriksen Lodge on a day of heavy snow. Salt Lake City lost the bid to Tampa, Fla.
Priebus visits on Feb. 25 and Feb. 26 would cap a week of high-profile Republican appearances in Utah. Romney, who led the Salt Lake Organizing Committee that put in the 2002 Winter Olympics, is scheduled to be in the state on Feb. 18 to participate in celebrations marking the tenth anniversary of the Games.
The leader of Summit County’s Republicans, Henry Glasheen, has said he anticipates Romney will visit the Park City area while he is in Utah. Details of a Park City visit have not been set. Romney was once a Park City homeowner.