NEWARK, N.J. (AP) — 2012 GOP nominee Mitt Romney will be hosting two rival Republican presidential contenders at a holiday sleepover Friday evening.
New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie and Florida Sen. Marco Rubio will both be staying over at Romney’s property in Wolfeboro, New Hampshire, an aide to Romney confirmed.
The aide, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because of what the aide called the private nature of the event, said the former governor and his wife opened their home to the Christie and Rubio families after hearing they would be in town for the holiday weekend. Both candidates are scheduled to march in Wolfeboro’s Fourth of July parade.
Christie, who formally jumped into the race this week, told reporters in New Hampshire Friday that he was grateful for the invitation.
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“I suspect there might be a little politics discussed tonight with Mitt and Ann, but me and Mary Pat, and Andrew and Sarah are really happy that Mitt and Ann invited us to stay with them tonight,” he said, according to video posted by NJ.com.
A Rubio spokesman declined to comment.
Romney had considered another run for president in 2016, but announced in January that he’d decided against it. His endorsement is now coveted.
The Washington Post reported Friday night that Romney would meet next week with former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, another GOP contender, at the Bush family compound in Kennebunkport, Maine.
Christie was a top surrogate for Romney’s 2012 campaign and was considered a potential vice presidential contender. But he continues to receive heat in some Republican circles for leaving the trail and embracing President Barack Obama after New Jersey was hit by Superstorm Sandy just before the election.
Christie’s campaign also announced some of its top staffers Friday.
The campaign will be managed by Ken McKay, who formerly worked for the Republican National Committee and Republican Governors Association.