NAPLES, Fla. – When former Pennsylvania Senator Rick Santorum suspended his presidential campaign last Monday, Mitt Romney found himself with a bit of a spring break on his calendar. He's spending the weekend portion of it in South Florida, raking in cash for the general election.
Two top Romney donors are hosting fundraising events for the presumptive Republican nominee on the west and east coasts of the Sunshine State Sunday, which one Romney fundraiser told the Palm Beach Post could draw in more than $2 million dollars in total for the campaign's new "Victory" fund – a joint account with the Republican National Committee.
In Naples on Sunday afternoon, Romney and his wife Ann attended an afternoon reception at the home of Francis Rooney, a former ambassador to the Vatican, who gave the $2,500 maximum allowable donation to Romney's primary campaign last June. His holding company followed that check with two separate half-million dollar donations to pro-Romney Super PAC, Restore Our Future.
Romney fundraising events are closed to the press, but reporters on the street outside Rooney's $14-million mansion watched a parade of Mercedes, Porsches and at least one Maserati pulling up to be valet-parked at the event – at which Romney gave remarks and left after an hour.
On Sunday evening, the Romneys were scheduled to dine at the Palm Beach home of Darlene and Gerald Jordan, each uber-donors to Republican organizations and candidates, particularly in Massachusetts and here in Florida. In 2010, Darlene Jordan wrote checks for $40,400 to the Rubio Victory Committee and for $15,000 to the Massachusetts Republican party.
The Jordans, who will host the Romneys and their donors outside at their 21,000 square-foot waterfront home, also gave $100,000 to Restore our Future last summer, after giving the maximum allowed amount to Romney's campaign in April.
Romney and other active candidates were not the only recipients of the Jordans' generosity. Federal election records also show that two months after former Minnesota Governor Tim Pawlenty suspended his campaign, the couple each donated $1,250 dollars to help retire his debt.