South Carolina To Host 2016 GOP Hopefuls At Duncan, Citizens United Event

AP Photo/Bruce Smith
AP Photo/Bruce Smith
Washington, DC

In two months, 2016 GOP presidential hopefuls will trek to Greenville, South Carolina, for an event hosted by Citizens United and Rep. Jeff Duncan (R-SC).

Confirmed speakers for the South Carolina Freedom Summit include Sen. Ted Cruz (R-SC), former Texas Gov. Rick Perry, former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum, Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC), Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal, Rep. Marsha Blackburn (R-TN), Duncan, and Citizens United president David Bossie. The event will take place at the Peace Center in Greenville, South Carolina, on May 9.

“Citizens United is excited to join Congressman Jeff Duncan to bring the Freedom Summit series to Greenville, South Carolina,” Bossie said in a release announcing the event. “The South Carolina Freedom Summit will build on the successes of our previous Freedom Summits in Iowa and New Hampshire. This is a free event bringing together grassroots conservatives and national leaders to highlight their vision of economic growth, social conservatism, and a strong national security.”

“Our strength and foundation lies in conservative policies. Coming off of the 2014 midterm elections, right now is the best time to gather our national leaders in South Carolina to hear their ideas for the future of our nation,” Duncan added. “The South Carolina Freedom Summit is a great opportunity to bring informed, engaged, and active members of the conservative movement together and begin evaluating potential leaders for the coming election in 2016. I’m very excited and grateful to partner with Citizens United and David Bossie to bring this unique and enjoyable experience to the great people of South Carolina this May.”

The South Carolina Freedom Summit comes after the hugely successful Iowa Freedom Summit a few weeks ago, which saw the launch of Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker’s rise to the top—or at least close to the top—of the 2016 GOP presidential polls. While Walker isn’t a confirmed speaker at the South Carolina event, more speakers are going to be announced soon and it’s likely he’ll be looking to attend the event.

South Carolina is the first southern primary state and as such is likely to play an important role in determining who the GOP nominee will be.

Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush’s campaign has faced numerous missteps in its early days despite Bush’s fundraising prowess. He struggled at the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) in D.C. last week, and he skipped the Iowa Freedom Summit. Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY), who just won the CPAC straw poll, missed the Iowa Freedom Summit due to scheduling conflict. It’ll be interesting to see if either or both attends this event in South Carolina.