The presumptive Republican presidential nominee, Mitt Romney, is due in Illinois Tuesday morning. Romney has visited the state regularly in recent months, but the agenda’s a bit different this time.
Romney was last in Chicago about seven weeks ago and a month before that. Both times he was here just to raise money. Total, he got more than $5 million on those trips, and he’ll pick up more cash Tuesday during two fundraisers in the city.
But first Romney will stop at Acme Industries in northwest suburban Elk Grove Village for a speech on unemployment and the economy, according to Illinois Treasurer Dan Rutherford.
"It just worked out that we were able to add on a public event that is not a fundraiser," said Rutherford, who chairs Romney’s Illinois campaign. "I think it’s heartening for the entire [political] organization, but it’s also important to highlight this in Barack Obama’s home state where we are at a very high unemployment rate."
At last count, Illinois’ unemployment was about a half-point higher than the national average.
Following his appearance in Elk Grove Village, Romney will attend a "roundtable discussion" fundraiser at Harry Caray's restaurant on the city's Near North Side, Rutherford said. The former Massachusetts governor will then head four blocks away to Maggiano's.
Ticket prices at the events range from $5,000 to more than $70,000, according to Rutherford.
"I don't want to call the number [expected to be raised] right now," Rutherford said in an interview Monday. "I'll let you know after the thing is over with."
Romney's visit to the state comes a few days before President Obama is slated to return to his hometown for a series of fundraising events.