Today marks the beginning of the 35th annual Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC). It is a large gathering of grassroot conservative activists and politicians. It is hosted by American Conservative Union, Human Events, and the Young America’s Foundation.
One candidate has already made a big splash today at CPAC. Mitt Romney spoke and announced that he is withdrawing from the race to be the GOP nominee. He said that he is doing it ‘for our party and for our country’. It will be very interesting to see what his supporters will do. Will they switch over to Mike Huckabee or will they throw their support behind John McCain because they feel that he is the inevitable nominee? I guess only time will tell. Rush Limbaugh has apparenly said on his radio show that there is no conservative alternative left in the race. Of course, I totally disagree with that assessment since I believe that conservatives have a candidate to rally behind in Mike Huckabee. Some are wondering what Mike Huckabee will do at this point. However, Huckabee’s campaign spokesman, Chip Saltsman, was just on Fox News a little while ago and said that Mike Huckabee will not be dropping out of the race.
With all of that said, John McCain is going to be speaking at CPAC within the hour. Last year, he snubbed conservatives by not attending the event. This year is his opportunity to reach out to conservatives. It will be interesting to hear what he has to say and see if he does in fact reach out to the conservative base of the GOP. The people who attend CPAC are the activists and grassroot supporters that McCain will need backing him in order to be successful in November. On a related note, the Politico is reporting that CPAC organizers are telling the attendees to not boo McCain. I find that pretty amusing.
Mike Huckabee will speaking at CPAC on Saturday. It will also be interesting to hear what he says and see if he will try to gather the support of the Romney supporters.
As the day goes on, I will give updates about what is going on at CPAC. If you would like to see the scedule of events at CPAC, go here.
Update: John McCain just got got done addressing the crowd at CPAC. Overall, I thought the speech was pretty strong. Hugh Hewitt called it superb. He got a few boo’s when he first brought up immigration but throughout the speech the boo’s quickly turned to cheers. I will post more related news and links below.