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An Ohio GOP Senate candidate reportedly crashed an RNC donor retreat and was escorted out

  • Josh Mandel, running for a vacant Ohio Senate seat, got escorted out of a donor retreat over the weekend.
  • The retreat was hosted by the Republican National Committee and offered candidates coveted opportunities to mingle with donors.
  • There were also opportunities to schmooze with GOP leaders like former President Donald Trump.
  • See more stories on Insider’s business page.

Security removed Ohio Senate candidate Josh Mandel from a donor retreat hosted by the Republican National Committee, Axios reported

The retreat, which took place over the weekend in a Palm Beach, Florida, hotel, welcomed guests on an invitation-only basis. Mandel did not have an invitation and crashed the event, according to Axios. 

While he was booted from the event, his main opponent, Jane Timken, got to stay and was invited “because she is a major donor,” an unnamed source told Axios. 

The event, which began on Friday, provides a prime chance for Republican candidates to mingle with some of the party’s biggest donors. 

Axios also points out that event attendees got access to major GOP figures, including former President Donald Trump. On Saturday night, the group headed to Mar-a-Lago, where Trump currently lives. Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis was also slated to speak to the group, Axios reported. DeSantis is believed to be considering a 2024 run at the presidency.

By getting booted from the retreat, Mandel loses not only a chance to capitalize on key donor power, but also time to schmooze with the former president and GOP mainstays. It also puts Timken in the spotlight in a contested race for a vacant Senate seat. 

Both Mandel and Timken have been fighting for Trump’s endorsement, according to Axios. His endorsement could go a long way in their Senate race to replace Ohio Sen. Rob Portman, who announced his retirement earlier this year. 

The RNC did not immediately respond to a request for comment from Insider.

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