Romney, who is considered by many as one of the top contenders for the Republican nomination, is scheduled to hold the fundraiser beginning at 8 a.m. Friday at the Jim Thorpe Association and Sports Hall of Fame, 4040 N. Lincoln Blvd. in Oklahoma City.

The event’s host committee includes such names as former Gov. Frank Keating, State Auditor Gary Jones, Fred J. Hall of Hall Capital LLC, Harold Hamm of Continental Resources, State Treasurer Ken Miller and Larry Nichols of Devon Energy.

The event will include a VIP reception and photo opportunity with Romney for a contribution of $2,500 per person, followed by a breakfast costing $500 per person.

The breakfast fundraiser will be followed by a state GOP fundraiser featuring Romney, said Matt Pinnell, Oklahoma Republican Party chairman and director.

The cost to attend this event is $20.12, a donation that can be made by calling the state Republican Party headquarters at 528-3501 by Thursday, Pinnell said.

The event, titled the 2012 Victory Rally, will run from around 10:25 a.m. to around 11:10 a.m. at the Jim Thorpe Association, Pinnell said.

Romney is not the first Republican presidential candidate to visit the state this year. Texas Gov. Rick Perry visited Tulsa for a private fundraiser in late August and held a joint press conference with U.S. Sen. Jim Inhofe, R-Okla.

Also in late August, Vice President Joe Biden visited Tulsa for a private fundraiser for President Obama’s re-election campaign.

Pinnell said the state GOP is trying to get every Republican presidential candidate to visit the state, and the two campaigns that have already visited show that candidates understand that Oklahoma, with its low unemployment and energy resources, is an important place to fundraise.

“I think it gets our base excited,” Pinnell said. “The people who want to label Oklahoma a flyover state; I don’t accept that at all.”

The 2012 presidential primary election for Oklahoma is scheduled for March 6, 2012. The general election will be held Nov. 6, 2012.

Perry thus far leads the Republican field in fundraising.

As of the last campaign fundraising report, Obama by far leads in fundraising among all contenders.

Photo by Gage Skidmore

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