CPAC 2021 Sunday: President Trump owns Orlando and Conservatism
LOS ANGELES, February 28, 2021 — The biggest of the big dogs came to town, and his bite matched his bark. At the 2021 Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC), former President Donald Trump gave his first major speech since leaving office. Orlando may be run by Democrats, but on this day it was Trump’s country.
The crowd was every bit as large as it was when he held his rallies. Vendors were in full force engaging in capitalism as caravans outside the hotel blared pro-Trump music.
There were other speakers at CPAC on Sunday, but this day was all about President Trump. Gone was the bombast, as Trump spoke in a very calm voice. He looked and sounded presidential while also getting in some humorous one-liners.
Trump began by offering heartfelt praise for the recently departed Rush Limbaugh. Trump made it crystal clear early in his remarks that he was absolutely not starting a new third party. The Republican Party would unite.
Trump then tore into Biden.
“Joe Biden had the worst month of any president in modern history.”
“Anti-jobs, anti-family, anti-borders, ant-energy, anti-women, and anti-science. We have gone from America first to America last.”
“Self-inflicted national security and humanitarian crisis at the border.” “Enriching child smugglers” and some of the “most vicious criminals.”
He mentioned the “China virus.”
He mocked Dr. Anthony Fauci’s doublespeak and ever-changing positions on masks.
Trump declared that Biden would “decisively lose the White House in four years.”
The crowd erupted in applause when Trump alluded to the stolen 2020 election.
“I may even decide to beat them for the third time.”
The President referencing his wife Melania Trump who came down the escalator with him as “our great future First Lady.”
Trump attacked the “callous indifference” of the media, but in a much more effective and creative way than in the past. In this case, their callous indifference is toward the many children desperate to go back to school. He accused the Biden administration of selling out America’s children to the teachers’ unions.
This is a winning issue for Republicans, and Trump was careful to distinguish between teachers and their unions. Trump mentioned the skyrocketing number of suicides and the drastic increases in depression among children.
“On behalf of the moms, dads, and children of America, I call on Joe Biden to get the schools open, and get them open now.”
Trump then pivoted toward his own administration’s multiple COVID successes under Operation Warp Speed. It normally takes vaccines five years to get approved, but the Trump administration got it done in nine months. He noted that he left Biden a fully functioning infrastructure to deliver the COVID vaccine.
“Joe Biden is only implementing the plan that we put in place.”
He noted that if we had honest media in America, they would say that.
As for the debunked lie about Biden having to start from scratch, Trump said that Biden was speaking not out of malice but out of possibly “not knowing what the hell was going on.”
On issues from gun control to far-left indoctrination in our schools and the military, Trump showed where he succeeded and Biden is failing.
Trump praised ICE agents and U.S. Border Patrol agents.
Everyday Americans are locked down while Biden is letting tens of thousands of illegals pour into America without any concern about COVID.
The crowd rose to its feet when Trump referenced the Abraham Accords.
Trump signed four Middle East peace deals and kept his promise to bring American troops home. Conversely, Biden removed sanctions on Iran in exchange for nothing and rejoined the World Health Organization and the Paris Climate Agreement. Trump lambasted these moves as unilateral surrenders.
On day one, Biden ended the construction of the Keystone Pipeline.
Despite reports of 11,000 job losses, Trump noted that it was closer to 42,000 lost jobs.
Trump reminded everyone that under his leadership, America became energy-independent for the first time.
“If Democrats have their way, we will move from energy dominance to energy disaster.”
Another winning issue for Republicans is the Biden administration’s letting transgender men compete in and effectively destroy women’s sports. If this does not end, “women’s sports will die.” Trump insisted that “We must protect the integrity of women’s sports.”
Every time Trump referenced the fraudulent 2020 election, the crowd responded enthusiastically.
“We won the election twice.”
Trump asked a question and answered it.
“What is Trumpism? It means great trade deals.”
It also means law and order rather than riots in the streets. And it means secure borders and preserving the Second Amendment.
Trump reminded those in the packed CPAC main room and the television audience that he rebuilt a depleted military and built a great economy twice. He rebuilt the economy after COVID caused financial contraction.
Trump refers to America as “an exceptional nation” graced by God.
Americans are patriotic people who “respect our great American flag.” That led the crowd the break into chants of “We love you.”
Trump brought the crowd to its feet for sustained standing ovations.
“We reject left-wing lunacy and in particular we reject cancel culture.”
“We believe the Constitution means what it says as written.”
Trump did offer pointed criticism of the courts’ refusal to hear the challenges to the 2020 election.
The crowd broke into chants of “We won!” Trump offered several necessities to improve election integrity, from requiring voter identification to sharply curtailing mail-in balloting. Trump noted that voter identification was required to attend the Democrat National Convention.
“There must be a chain of custody protection for every ballot.” Democrats “used COVID as a way of cheating. Everybody knows it.”
Another standing ovation came when Trump said that the time had come to break up big tech. Trump called for major sanctions on Twitter, Facebook and Google whenever they censor people.
Trump took significant time in his speech to relitigate the 2020 election, reminding everyone of the statistical anomalies that made a legitimate Biden win seemingly impossible.
Trump’s remarks could not conclude without attacks on congressional Republicans. Ronald Reagan’s 11th Commandment took a back seat as Trump named every (RINO) Republican in name only. He served up special scorn for “warmonger” Liz Cheney. Mike McCarthy went unscathed, and Mitch McConnell was barely mentioned. Trump said he wanted to unify the Republican Party, and his speech largely hewed to that.
The Republicans he called out have largely become pariahs in the GOP. Trump noted that Democrats win because they are united.
Republicans need to unite around conservative policies because they actually work.
Trump then offered the most important detail in his speech.
President Trump assures us he will not be sitting on the sidelines during the 2022 midterm elections. He would be working hard to get strong, tough conservative Republicans elected.
Trump announced his “Save America PAC” and implored the audience to also donate to DonaldJTrump.com. He did not do this in the past, but he said we had to be as aggressive as the left.
Trump brought his speech home with a positive, optimistic outlook that represents the American pioneer spirit. He also teased his future intentions without fully committing himself to another presidential run.
“A Republican president will make a triumphant return
to the White House,
and I wonder who that will be.”
Trump spoke for over one hour and 40 minutes. After a final round of applause that seemed to last forever, Trump exited Orlando and took his private plane back to Mara Lago in South Florida. Because of his calm tone, critics will say he was “low-energy.” This is incorrect. Trump was focused and disciplined.
If he wants to return to the White House, this is the speaking tone he needs to keep using.
CPAC 2021 was in the books, but it will have ramifications for years to come. The American Conservative Union led by Matt Schlapp showed that a very successful CPAC could be put on outside of Washington, D.C.
A return to Florida would be a very wise move.