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Scott Walker, Rick Santorum, Karl Rove: What to expect when the GOP gets to Philly next week

At least five of the 900 Republican presidential candidates will be in Philadelphia next week for the national Northeast Regional Leadership Conference, a veritable GOPalooza. The country’s top tier of rich white men will inundate the Sheraton Philadelphia Downtown Hotel for breakfast and discussions about how to boot Obamacare and reach those ~*~ millennials ~*~.

The annual conference, held last year in swing state New Hampshire, has featured the likes of Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal, former UN ambassador John Bolton and last year’s conference straw poll winner Rand Paul.

This year, it doesn’t appear Jeb Bush has RSVP’d to attend at this point since he’s not officially running for president, and it’s all a huge mystery! Also probably not attending: Tea Party native children Ted Cruz and Marco Rubio, failed TV pundit and Josh Duggar pal Mike Huckabee and once-indicted Texas Gov. Rick Perry. Oh, also billionaire Donald Trump won’t be around.

Here’s the full list of speakers, but all you really need to know is that this show is being headlined by Wisconsin Gov. and notorious Koch Brothers ally Scott Walker, who describes himself as “100 percent pro-life,” opposes abortion even in cases of rape and incest, opposes rights for gay couples including hospital visits and supports police profiling to stop illegal immigration.

The rest of the presidential candidates in attendance can best be described as adult failures.

Conference-goers will wake Friday morning to hear from Rick Santorum, a former PA senator who is currently polling lower than Voldemort and drew one whole supporter during a recent stop in caucus-lovin’ Iowa.

After a session with John McCain’s biffle South Carolina Sen. Lindsey Graham, there’s a lunchtime session with NJ Gov. Chris Christie, the Bridgegate-scandal hurt, Dallas Cowboys-loving, arch enemy of Philadelphia recently photographed rocking a pair of softball pants. 

It’s a big tent, people, so there’s also a spot for ex-Hewlett Packard CEO Carly Fiorina, ex-George W. Bush adviser Karl Rove and lunch on Saturday with Walker. Sprinkled in with these interactions will be workshops for the Republican leaders like:

A word about their chances: Democrats outnumber Republicans 7-1 in the city, we haven’t had a Republican mayor since before the Vietnam War and there were 59 precincts in 2012 where Mitt Romney earned literally zero votes. Not to mention every important Democrat this side of New Hampshire will be here next fall so they can nominate the 2016 Democratic presidential candidate.

What we’re saying is this: A GOP presidential candidate will not win in this city, and, really, the state, either. So why Philly?

“As the birthplace of America, Philadelphia is the perfect location for Republicans to discuss ways to share our core principles of individual freedom and economic opportunity with the country,” Rob Gleason, Chairman of the PA Republican Party, said through a spokeswoman.

We’ll be tweeting about and covering the conference next week, so follow along. Interested in going? It’s $49 to attend general sessions, and you’ll have to cough up $249 if you want to attend all the special meals with Christie, Santorum, etc.

And great news if you’re a staunch Santorum supporter: A la carte tickets for his breakfast are only $35! They’re the same price as the event with Karl Rove. 

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