Mitt Romney, the 2012 Republican presidential nominee, is returning to the Richmond area June 17 to attend former Lt. Gov. Bill Bolling’s 20th annual “Burgers with Bill.”
“I really appreciate Mitt coming to Virginia to help me thank my friends for all you’ve done for Jean Ann and me over the years,” Bolling said in a Facebook post, adding that more details will be forthcoming.
The invitation-only “appreciation event” for Bolling’s supporters and friends is not a political fundraiser. Bolling’s Virginia Mainstream Project will pay for the event and attendees will not pay a charge to attend.
Bolling served as chairman of Romney’s Virginia presidential campaigns in 2008 and 2012 and they long have aided each other’s political efforts. In June 2008, Romney attended Bolling’s “burgers” event in Innsbrook even after Romney had suspended his bid for the Republican presidential nomination.
Bolling, who served two terms as lieutenant governor, dropped out of the 2013 Republican campaign for governor after the party’s State Central Committee changed the nominating process from a primary to a convention.
He later decided not to enter the race as an independent, citing his longtime times to the Republican Party and the challenges of mounting such a run.
Bolling recently accepted a promotion at his insurance firm, RCM&D, and returned to the private sector full time, while devoting his political energies to his nonprofit Virginia Mainstream Project, which is focused on “electing mainstream, conservative Republicans to public office.”
Last fall Bolling refused to endorse Ken Cuccinelli, the Republican nominee for governor. In March, Gov. Terry McAuliffe, a Democrat, named Bolling – an avid fly fisherman – to an unpaid position on the board of the Department of Game and Inland Fisheries.
Bolling recently donated $15,000 to the state Republican Party to help improve its digital infrastructure.
Olympia Meola contributed to this report.