Pompeo to Discuss World Events at Statesman Dinner

Todays News

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo will headline the Republican Party of Sarasota’s Statesman of the Year Dinner tonight. The event at Nathan Benderson Park will also bring Sen. Rick Scott to the event. The dinner has become a stop for candidates with presidential aspirations and helped turn Sarasota into a must-visit destination for national figures on the right.

“In the past, Sarasota has been a stopping point or place to speak for aspiring presidential candidates,” said Jack Brill, acting RPOS chair. 

Indeed, Pompeo has been rumored to be considering a run for president. Scott has ruled out a run this election cycle but has known ambitions for the White House. And Gov. Ron DeSantis, last year’s Statesman of the Year award recipient, comes in first or second in polls of Republicans on who they would support. The only candidate consistently beating him is former President Donald Trump, who won the Statesman honor twice.

Brill said the timing of the Pompeo stop will make the event an important one to attend regardless of politics. Pompeo served as Trump’s secretary of state and before that as CIA director. With an invasion in the Ukraine, tension of human rights in China and a host of other international events in the headlines, Pompeo’s take on a number of subjects should be of interest.

“He was peacekeeper of the U.S. and the world for four years,” Brill said. “I’m curious about his comments on (Vladimir) Putin and everything. With what’s going on in the world, the only place you want to be is in Sarasota.”

The barbeque dinner at Nathan Benderson Park will begin at 5:30 p.m. There is a VIP event that starts at 5 p.m. for those who paid for special access. Ticket sales have already closed for the $100 to $300 a plate dinner. 

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