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  • By Bruce Lloyd

GOP committee chair hasn't heard about Trump gala scandal

Republican Party National Chairwoman Ronna Romney McDaniel arrived at A.B. Won Pat International Airport Monday afternoon, to be greeted by GOP colleagues including Guam GOP National Committeeman Juan Carlos Benitez, former Guam Delegate candidate Margaret Metcalfe and Guam Senate Minority Leader Sen. Wil. M. Castro. Also in the welcoming party was Miss Guam International Athena McNinch.

Coming from still wintry Michigan, McDaniel said she welcomed her stint in a tropical climate, which she will spend at several events Tuesday.

.“Chairwoman McDaniel is visiting with us not only to meet with local Republicans but also to hear and learn more about issues affecting Guam and our region” said Jerry Crisostomo, Guam GOP Chairman in an earlier press release.

"Well my husband's very jealous, he really wanted to come...We love Guam," said McDaniel. "I talked to the president [Donald Trump] right before we left and he was like, 'say hello' and he said, 'where are you going?' and I said, 'we're going to Guam.'"

Apparently though, a three-day old story first reported by the Palm Beach Post and then by NBC News and the Washington D.C. based Hill web site and other outlets wasn't part of the discussion with the president.

Read related story

Saipan casino, Guam companies among Trump's donors

The Imperial Pacific International, operator of a Saipan casino, and the Republican Party of Guam are among the top sponsors of one of President Trump’s 2017 inaugural galas, according to the list posted on the Asian Pacific American Advisory Committee’s website dedicated to the event.But there is no record or official report of how much the Asian Pacific Gala raised, as required by federal law or where that money went.

Familiar individuals in both Guam and the CNMI were linked to the gala, including Phillip Mendiola Long of Bridge Investment Group, Elaine Cruz Jones of Jones & Guerrero Co., Matthew Pothen of Guam Shipyard, Elaine Jones & Family, PHR Ken Micronesia, Derek Uehara of Uehara Financial Group, LLC, Calvo Fisher & Jacob Law Offices, Jonathan Kriegel, former CEO of Docomo Pacific and the Chinese Chamber of Commerce of Guam.

But McDaniel said she hadn't heard about any of this:

"No I am not familiar with that story. I am sorry, I apologize."

McDaniel's day in the sun begins at 8 a.m. with a Women’s Network Breakfast of the Guam Women's Chamber of Commerce at the Salon at Dusit Thani Hotel and then she will be the guest speaker at the 11:30 a.m. Guam Chamber of Commerce membership luncheon at the Hyatt Regency Hotel.

After sundown, there will be a "Grand Ole Party Event at the View at Pacific Star Hotel – a gathering of Guam and CNMI Republicans hosted by Former Governors of Guam and CNMI Governors." According to the release, this is a free event and open to the public.


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