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GOP prospects court casino mogul

LAS VEGAS — Three Republican governors considering a run for the White House, including embattled Governor Chris Christie of New Jersey, went to Las Vegas to court Sheldon Adelson, a billionaire casino owner who could give any of their eventual campaigns a major financial boost.

The governors met one-on-one with Adelson, 80, and addressed a Saturday conference of the Republican Jewish Coalition, an advocacy group that counts him as a board member and benefactor.

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More than 400 of the coalition’s top donors and those seeking support from them gathered this weekend at Adelson’s convention center-hotel-casino complex, part of his international Las Vegas Sands Corp.

Christie and governors John Kasich of Ohio and Scott Walker of Wisconsin told the group they represent the kind of candidates the party needs in 2016.

Christie, who twice won the governorship in a Democratic-leaning state, pitched himself as an example of how to broaden the party’s appeal.

He said that in his reelection victory in November, exit polls showed he received 51 percent of New Jersey’s Hispanic vote and boosted his share of African-American support to 21 percent from 7 percent four years earlier.

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