Republicans gathering next week in Bloomington for the Midwest Leadership Conference will get a chance to vote for their favorite presidential candidate.
Organizers announced today that they will conduct a straw poll during the closing reception of the event, Saturday, Oct. 8. The winner will be announced that evening. The conference begins on Oct. 7. In a news release, Republican Party of Minnesota Chairman Tony Sutton said the poll will provide another in a series of opportunities to measure the relative strength of GOP presidential candidates.
"The road to the White House goes through the Midwest," Sutton said. "The 12 states that make up the Midwest region include several swing states, Minnesota among them, that will play a pivotal role in the 2012 presidential election. Consequently, the Midwest region will have a significant say in who the Republican candidate is that makes President Obama a one-term president."
The conference will include attendees from Ohio, Missouri, Kansas, Nebraska, Wisconsin, North Dakota, South Dakota, Michigan, Indiana, Iowa, Illinois and Minnesota. Scheduled speakers include Sen. Ron Johnson of Wisconsin, Iowa Gov. Terry Branstad, Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker, commentator Michael Reagan, and political advisor Karl Rove.