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Once again, Florida comes through for George W. Bush

March 18, 2008 | 11:02 pm

So while Democrats battle each other over their dueling duo of nominees and over the still "disenfranchised'' voters of their party in Florida and Michigan, President Bush swooped into the Sunshine State today and swept up nearly $1.5 million for the Republican Party that's already settled on its presidential nominee.

The president picked up $685,500 for the Republican National Committee at a fundraising luncheon in Jacksonville at the home of John Rood, former ambassador to the Bahamas, according to a party official.  And he raked in another $762,000 at an early evening fundraiser in Palm Beach.  About 50 people attended each closed-door event.

Jeb Bush, the president's younger brother and former governor of Florida, and George P. Bush, the ex-governor's son, were on hand to greet the president for a ride to the Palm Beach home of Dwight C. and Martha Schar.  He is chairman of NVR Inc.  The youngest Bush -- "P," as he's known around the family (for Prescott) -- campaigned for the president and is viewed by many as perhaps next in the line of four political generations of the Bush family.

That's $1,447,500 in Florida in one day's work -- a significant contribution toward the president's stated goal of $28 million in fundraising for the party in the first few months of 2008 -- a goal he spelled out in a personalized e-mail to supporters earlier this month.

-- Mark Silva

Mark Silva writes for the Swamp of the Chicago Tribune's Washington Bureau.

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