Former Vice President Pence will not speak at the Conservative Political Action Conference in Orlando, Florida, next week.
The story: Pence was invited to attend the event, which is scheduled for next week, but he turned it down, according to multiple media reports who cited unanimous sources familiar with the matter. Politico’s White House reporter Gabby Orr first reported that the former vice president declined the invitation.
One source told CNN that organizers will try to persuade Pence to show up at the event. Another said the former vice president plans to avoid the public eye for at least half a year.
Meanwhile, former President Trump accepted the invitation and plans to speak at the conference, which will take place Feb. 25-28. The former president is expected to speak on Sunday, the last day of the event.
This would be Trump’s first major public appearance since his Jan. 19 farewell address outside the White House. The former president has made some cable news appearances in the meantime.
A person familiar with Trump’s planned speech told Fox News that he will speak about President Joe Biden’s immigration policies or his “disastrous amnesty and border policies” and the future of the Republican Party. Trump has not ruled out a 2024 presidential run nor has he swore off politics yet.
He has attended CPAC a total of eight times since 2008.
Trump and Pence: Several reports claimed that the relationship between the former vice president and the former president deteriorated in the aftermath of the Jan. 6 Capitol riot. Some members of Pence’s office said he developed “bitterness” toward Trump after the storming of the Capitol building because he was inside when rioters broke in.
Some Pence aides said the former vice president saw Trump’s behavior as the “ultimate betrayal.”
Former Pence chief of staff Marc Short claimed that the two “departed amicably” and have talked on several occasions since.
Others who will make an appearance at the conference include potential Republican presidential candidates including Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, Sen. Josh Hawley (R-MO), Sen. Kristi Noem (R-SD), Sen. Tom Cotton (R-AR), Sen. Rick Scott (R-FL), Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX), and former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo.
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Author: Penka Arsova
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