CPAC 2023, the Conservative Political Action Conference, earlier this month at the National Harbor just outside Washington, D.C., was another State of the Union for the conservative movement. There is always a fine line and complicated relationship between the Republican Party and the conservative movement, and this year was no different.
By most accounts, the Republican nomination for 2024 is between Donald Trump and Ron DeSantis. Both, I would say, are beloved by a majority of the CPAC crowd. This year Trump won the annual straw poll by a margin of 62% to 20% over DeSantis, with the only others above 1% of the more than 2,000 who voted being Nikki Haley and Perry Johnson. Speakers there who are announced presidential candidates were Haley, Trump, and newcomer to the group, Vivek Ramaswamy, an entrepreneur and author of books such as Woke, Inc.
Trump’s former Secretary of Defense and head of the CIA, Mike Pompeo, who many expect will be throwing his hat in the ring, spoke, but former VP Mike Pence and Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis stayed away. While all signs point to DeSantis getting in the race, I suspect he may think better of that in the end. Fighting Trump could prove to be a battle that does neither any good, even though he could well win it. But my guess is that at age 44, DeSantis will defer 4 years before he runs for the White House.
I have been attending CPAC as part of the media since 1998, missing just 2 or 3 of them since then. I was curious what people there were thinking, so I spoke with some members of the public who chose to attend this event.
My unscientific survey found several people who are supporting Trump, who believe that he did a great job as president, but are unhappy with his attacks on DeSantis, a rising star in the GOP. While recognizing that The Big Lie applies more accurately to the Democrat/media Russia collusion hoax, and the phony J6 committee/media narrative, Trump as the candidate might be too much to defend, they argued. Once Trump’s name comes up, civil discussions rarely follow, unless both or all participants support him.
Most of whom I spoke with thought Trump did a great job as president when it came to energy policy, the border, pulling out of the disgraceful Iran deal, and the fraudulent Paris Climate Accord. The feeling seems to be, Trump is the clear favorite at this point, even with potential indictments hanging over his head, and if he is the nominee, they will be 100% on board. But at this point, they would be just as supportive of DeSantis, and believe his baggage would be much lighter of a load. Another Big Lie from the left is that DeSantis pushed a bill that includes Don’t Say Gay, which it doesn’t. In fact, many feel the law didn’t go far enough in terms of who it protected from transgender ideology indoctrination (DeSantis’ bill covered kindergarten through 3rd grade only).
There were some great panels and speakers at CPAC, as always. James O’Keefe, who this week announced his new venture, O’Keefe Media Group, following his ouster by the board of the organization he founded and ran for many years, Project Veritas, spoke in his first public appearance since the parties split from each other. Tom Fitton of Judicial Watch gave a compelling overview of much of the corruption they are currently investigating. Both of those speeches can be found at this link for the Saturday, March 4 speakers, which also includes Donald Trump’s speech that was the final one of the conference. The agenda for that day is here, so that you can find who the speakers and panels were, and then go to the YouTube link and scroll to find the speeches, which are mostly in synch with the schedule.
The same for the speeches on Friday, March 3, which included a particularly illuminating panel consisting of Mollie Hemingway and Rep. James Comer (scroll to 29:10), and you can see the schedule of that day here.
I interviewed several people for our National Security Alert series, which we will be releasing over the next several days. Today we are releasing the interview with Dr. Robert Malone, the inventor of mRNA vaccines.
In this interview, Dr. Robert Malone discusses his experiences, his observations and his transformation during the Covid-19 pandemic, as well as his book, “Lies My Gov’t Told Me.” He talks about the vaccine, the mandates, and the corruption of the medical bureaucracy that exists today, and how the World Health Organization in coordination with the Biden administration is subordinating U.S. national sovereignty to the whims of the Chinese Communist Party-appointed head of the World Health Organization, Dr. Tedros.
He names the forces, individuals and institutions behind the censorship and propaganda that have characterized and shaped the entire pandemic and its consequences. I think you will find it fascinating.
The views expressed in CCNS member articles are not necessarily the views or positions of the entire CCNS. They are the views of the authors, who are members of the CCNS.