Washington (CNN) - Rep. Michele Bachmann, R-Minnesota, will extend her upcoming South Carolina trip to speak at a tax day Tea Party rally in Columbia alongside Gov. Nikki Haley, according to a Republican familiar with her plans.
The April 18 event on the steps of the South Carolina State House is being organized by the Columbia Tea Party. State Sen. Tom Davis and Treasurer Curtis Loftis, two rising stars in the state’s Republican ranks, are also slated to speak.
Bachmann is the first potential GOP presidential candidate to join the rally, expected to be one of the biggest Tea Party events of the year in the state.
Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour, former House Speaker Newt Gingrich and former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum will be in the state this weekend appearing at county Republican conventions in Greenville and Spartanburg.
Bachmann, meanwhile, had already scheduled a two-day visit to the early primary state beginning April 15 for a fundraiser and a pair of rallies in the Hilton Head area.
Haley, one of former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney’s top surrogates in the state during his 2008 presidential bid, has said she will endorse a candidate before the South Carolina primary.