(CNN) – Business mogul Donald Trump will be recognized as the 2012 Statesman of the Year by the Sarasota, Florida, Republican Party the day before the Republican National Convention opens in Tampa next month.
Tickets for the August 26 dinner go as high as $1,000 per person, which include a private meet-and-greet with Trump, according to an invitation flyer for the event.
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Trump has endorsed the presidential run of presumptive GOP nominee Mitt Romney, though Trump's repeated questioning of President Barack Obama's birthplace and birth certificate have overshadowed events where they have appeared together.
Trump initially flirted with his own run for the presidency, but dropped out of the field in the spring.
He has appeared this year at state-level Republican Party events, such as a fundraiser for the North Carolina GOP last month, where he stood by his so-called "birther" comments and said waging war with Iran may be "good politics" for the incumbent.
Rep. Vern Buchanan, who is the subject of four federal and Congressional investigations into his business practices, has donated at least $15,000 in conjunction with the event, according to the August invitation. Buchanan is the head of fundraising for the National Republican Congressional Committee, which works to elect Republicans to Congress.
- CNN's Steve Brusk and Gregory Wallace contributed to this report
I would like to see Trump and NJ governor Christie on the same ticket. Talk about soundbites.
Poor judgment Sarasota. And this coming for a dedicated conservative. Statesman, NO. Arrogant blowhard, YES.
I always thought I knew what "statesman" meant. Huh. Live and learn, I guess.
Oh boy – he's baaaaaccccckkkkk !!! Just like PALIN – TRUMPet keeps going, and going, and going!!!
Obama 2012 – The Only Trusted Way Forward!!
Really? Is this how low the republican party has sunk? This is who they choose to name "Statesman of the year". Pretty pathetic. And I see they have one crook endorsing and supporting the other. The republican party has deteroiated into a party that's only good for laughs.
If he's a statesman, I'm God.
Trump? The BEST Statesman..?
I didn't know CNN had a Funnies section.
Theater of the absurd? Oh, yeah, it's repubs, isn't it.
What are these people thinking? Donald Trump is far from a statesman but maybe they are using different criteria. His public remarks and the way he has led his life do not make him a statesman.
This has got to be one crazy joke or the GOP in FL has really went out on the deep end. Trump – statesman= balderdash. Trump-carnival barker = typical.
One more case to prove that the GOP will stoop to any low just for money. There cannot be an ounce of integrity in their collective body...
scraping the bottom of the barrel-the republican party died years ago
Leave it to Florida. You people in the Florida GOP might want to consider some serious couch time with the Doc.
As a moderate Republican, I find myself being forced out by idiotic posturing such as this action. GOP,in satisfying a branch of the party, you're alienating those who will decide the election.
If you don't laugh at the absurdity ,you would go insane thinking that these people are really,really serious about the respect they are showing and who they are choosing to show it to....and who they don't show it to!!!! It seems change has them thinking upside-down and backwards!!!
What a joke.
He's the "BIGGEST IDIOT OF THE YEAR",.....joe walsh running a close second.....in third, West of Florida
When you think that the only thing you possess of value is money .....the people like Trump get your admiration!!!!
Bankrupt party, gambler and a thief, he is far far from anyone close to a statesmen. Like moderation patriot or leader republicans are living in a bubble, they fake it .
Ronmey for President.
Trump "Statesman of the Year"
Wow ... the GOP is really scraping the bottom ....
Even Bill O'Reilly would call them pinheads for giving Trump this award.
Where's Trump now,haven't heard from him politically with Romney in weeks.Maybe Romneys advisors got thru and told him how much damage he's doing with his arrogent,ignorent mouth,he's truely the unrelating one..His talk of bullying China and other countries doesn't seem to set a good diplomatic example for any candidate,Romneys extreme,but not that bad because of his past outsourcing history while at Bain...That's hypocricy at its highest level,but it can be achived knowing Romney,he's done it before,hasn't he!!!
Only the Republicans could think of Trump as a Great Statesman. What a joke.
Tells you alot about the mindset of the GOP.
What is the definition of stateman? Are you kidding me?
Remember, Sarasota is the same place that gave us Katherine Harris!!