Set for Labor Day, four presidential candidates have accepted invitations to participate in a forum led by Sen. Jim DeMint in his home state. The South Carolina senator, a conservative “kingmaker,” has yet to throw his support behind any of the presidential hopefuls, according to CNN
The Palmetto Freedom Forum, scheduled for Sept. 5, so far will feature Texas Gov. Rick Perry, Minnesota Rep. Michele Bachmann, Texas Rep. Ron Paul, and businessman Herman Cain.
Also invited but yet to respond are former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, former House Speaker Newt Gingrich, and two Republicans still considering a run: former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin and former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani.
The only Republican candidates not invited are former Utah Gov. Jon Huntsman and former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum. The group organizing the forum — the “Keep Your Powder Dry Caucus” — set a 5 percent support threshold determined by the RealClearPolitics average of national polls; both Santorum and Huntsman have not passed that figure.
In addition to DeMint, the event will be led by Iowa Rep. Steve King and Robert George, a conservative legal scholar and founder of the American Principles Project.
The forum is designed to provide South Carolina voters a chance to see the candidates “engage in a thoughtful, substantive discussion of their stances on critical issues facing our country,” organizers say
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