The Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) begins Thursday, February 25 in Orlando, Florida, with ousted President Donald Trump as the keynote speaker in his first public engagement since leaving the White House for Mar-a-Lago a month ago.
CPAC, a four-day gathering of right-wing activists from across the United States, was founded in 1974 by the Conservative Union of America and Young Americans for Freedom and its inaugural address was delivered by Ronald Reagan, then governor of California and a presidential candidate for two years. later, who used the platform to present his vision of the country.
Since then, it has become a paramount date on the Conservative calendar, an opportunity for American rightists to come together to compare notes on a range of issues related to their value system, from the Second Amendment right to bear. weapons until abortion.
But this year’s conference, titled “America Not Canceled,” is likely to be unusually tense given that the Republican Party is currently mired in civil war following Trump’s electoral defeat and the Capitol riots, with supporters Trump and the establishment moderates locked in a dispute. that seeks to determine its future.
The latest speaker lineup has a distinctly Trumpian flavor, as CPAC makes its loyalty to the 45th president clear. And its theme promises a fixation on post-George Floyd “culture war” narratives of political correctness and censorship, rather than addressing broader political issues like the pandemic, the climate crisis, social justice or the terrorist threat. raised by white supremacists.
The former president has kept a relatively low profile since leaving office and lost his Twitter account, but will reportedly use his platform on Sunday for a “show of force,” according to Axios, reminding the Republican Party that he is still out. charge, expect to play king. for the foreseeable future and is his “presumptive nominee for 2024”.
“Trump is effectively the Republican Party,” his senior adviser Jason Miller told the site. “The only gulf is between Beltway insiders and grassroots Republicans across the country. When you attack President Trump, you are attacking the Republican base. “
The former president is also expected to stage an attack on Joe Biden, just five weeks into the job, for destroying the country, with a particular focus on his successor’s approach to immigration reform, according to reports.
It remains to be seen whether Trump will be able to resist the opportunity to lash out at his enemies on the right, which now include the likes of Mike Pence, Mitch McConnell and Liz Cheney following his recent acquittal of impeachment in the Senate.
We can certainly look forward to more flag hugs though, her habit of hugging the stars and stripes like a beloved grandmother is a signature gesture for CPAC and one of their weirdest shows.
In addition to Trump, this year’s other speakers include American Conservative Union President Matt Schlapp and former Trump administration officials Mike Pompeo, Ben Carson, Andrew Wheeler, KT McFarland, Sarah Huckabee Sanders, Larry Kudlow and Matthew Whitaker.
Governors Kirsti Noem, Ron DeSantis and Scott Walker will appear, as will Magaverse celebrities Donald Trump Jr, Dan Bongino, Charlie Kirk, Tom Fitton, Pam Bondi, actor Jon Voight, Fox host Pete Hegseth, Buck Sexton, James O’Keefe, Sara A Carter, Black Guns Matter founder Maj Toure, and former NRA spokesperson Dana Loesch.
Rapper and cultural commentator Young Pharaoh was also removed from the original guest list, who was removed after Media Matters reported that he had previously made anti-Semitic comments.
In response, the hip hop artist described CPAC’s decision to remove him from “America Uncancelled” as “censorship at its finest.”