Ayotte honored, surprised at invitation to speak at RNC
U.S. Sen. Kelly A. Ayotte said Thursday that she was honored and surprised to be asked to speak at this month's Republican National Convention in Tampa.
Ayotte, the junior senator from New Hampshire, said she is a little taken aback that her political career has progressed to the point where she will be in the national spotlight at the convention, at which former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney is expected to be named the party's nominee for the presidential election against Democratic President Barack Obama.
“I certainly never expected to be included in the GOP convention,” she said.
The invitation comes after Ayotte continued to be listed as a possible running mate for Romney until Saturday's announcement that U.S. Rep. Paul Ryan of Wisconsin had been selected.
She joins a who's-who of Republican stars speaking at the convention, including New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, who will deliver the keynote address, U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida, U.S. Sen. Rand Paul of Kentucky and U.S. Sen. John McCain, who was the party's nominee in 2008.
“It's an honor to be included in that group,” she said.
Ayotte said she didn't yet know which day of the convention, which runs from Aug. 27-30, she'd be speaking.
She said she found out Wednesday she'd been invited.
Ayotte endorsed Romney in November in the months leading up to New Hampshire's first-in-the-nation primary election, which Romney won. She has continued to campaign with and on behalf of Romney since then and is scheduled to appear with Romney at a campaign event in Iowa next week.
“I'm certainly going to focusing (the convention speech) on Governor Romney and why I believe he is the best person to serve and be our president,” she said.
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