Politics Next Week: The First Real GOP Debate and the Rick Perry Question

Jun 10, 2011 4:26pm

ABC News' Z. Byron Wolf (@zbyronwolf), Amy Walter (@amyewalter) and Michael Falcone (@michaelpfalcone) report:  

515 days until election day, 2012

35 days until the next FEC deadline

3 days until the next debate

The Republican campaign for President starts in earnest next week with the debate in New Hampshire Monday.

It’s not the first debate of the season, but it will be the first debate featuring frontrunner Mitt Romney. It is in New Hampshire and sponsored by CNN, WMUR and the Union Leader. Other candidates making their debate debuts – Bachmann and Gingrich. Cain, Paul, Santorum and T-Paw will also debate. Notably, Jon Huntsman, who has spent more time in New Hampshire since returning to the country than any other state, won’t be participating.

But he will be in New Hampshire over the weekend, riding a Harley Davidson on Saturday.

What about Newt?

The question of the weekend will be this – who will last longer -  Weiner as a Congressman or Gingrich as a candidate? The odds may be on Weiner. Gingrich launches campaign 2.0. He gave the first speech of his candidacy in Washington, D.C., and will give the first speech of this re-launch in Beverly Hills. He also releases a book Tuesday.  It is called: "A Nation Like No Other: Why American Exceptionalism Matters."

What about Perry?

By the end of next week, the focus will have turned  to New Orleans, where the Republican Leadership Conference is holding its annual conference. Texas Gov. Rick Perry is scheduled to speak next Saturday and he will be very much the elephant in the campaign field until then. It remains to be seen if he is serious or teasing about a possible run. But all those Gingrich staffers need a home. Perry is also scheduled to speak in Manhattan on 6/14 – filling in for Donald Trump at the NY GOP’s Lincoln dinner.

What about Obama?

The President fundraises in Miami in Puerto Rico Tuesday – boasting he is the first sitting President to visit since JFK. While Republicans debate, he’s been quietly raising money. And there will be a big test for his reelection campaign in Minnesota at the end of the week. While Republicans are down in the Big Easy, Democratic and progressive activists will be at the annual Netroots Nation in Minneapolis. White House Communications Director Dan Pfeiffer is a speaker and it will be interesting to see if emissaries for a President who has legislated toward the middle can get the base revved up.

Bookmark the Note Futures Calendar.

Other Notable Events Next Week:

June 10-12:  Tim Pawlenty, Jon Huntsman  and Ron Paul in New Hampshire

June 12: Newt Gingrich is the Keynote Speaker at the Republican Jewish Coalition's Summer Bash at the Beverly Hills Hilton Hotel.

June 12: John Boehner speaks at Ohio State University's commencement ceremony.

June 13: Iowa tea party supporters will kick off a three-week bus tour with plans to stop in 20 cities across the state. Herman Cain, Michele Bachmann, Newt Gingrich and Rick Santorum are scheduled to appear on the tour.

June 13: Newt Gingrich releases his 24th book, "A Nation Like No Other: Why American Exceptionalism Matters."

June 13: President Obama will speak at a fundraising event at the Arsht Center in Miami, Fl.

June 16-18: The 2011 Republican Leadership Conference & Reagan Centennial Celebration will be held in New Orleans. Speakers include: Jon Huntsman, Michele Bachmann, Herman Cain, Newt Gingrich, Mike Huckabee, Ron Paul, Rick Santorum, Texas Gov. Rick Perry and U.S. Senator Jim DeMint.

June 16-19: The Netroots Nation convention takes place in Minneapolis, Minn. Speakers at the annual gathering of progressives include White House Communications Director Dan Pfieffer, former Chief Economist and Economic Adviser to Vice President Joe Biden and member of President Obama's economic team Jared Bernstein, National Field Director of Obama for America Jeremy Bird

June 17-18: Michele Bachmann, Herman Cain and Tim Pawlenty will address America for Prosperity's RightOnline 2011 conference in Minneapolis, Minn.

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