NATIONAL HARBOUR, Md., February 24, 2017 — Vice President Mike Pence concluded a raucous first night of CPAC on Thursday. Friday morning exploded out of the gate as President Donald Trump addressed the crowd. In 2016, many CPAC attendees were suspicious of him; 30 days in office had the 2017 CPAC crowd firmly in his corner.
Trump took some jabs at the media but also threw a harsh barb at “bloodsucking political consultants”: “They’re not good at politics but they’re really good at sucking up other people’s money.”
He reiterated his contempt for the corrupt media. He said that he did not call the media itself the enemy of the people. Fake news is the enemy of the people, not all media. He attacked the use of anonymous sources and said that sources should use their names. He referred to CNN as the “Clinton News Network.”
Trump said his victory means “We should stand up for the American worker and stand up for the American flag.”
Trump vowed that the construction of a border wall will begin soon. He lamented the $6 trillion spent in the Middle East and a healthcare law he called a “total catastrophe.” He astutely pointed out that the politically smart thing to do about Obamacare would be nothing. Let it implode so Democrats suffer the political fallout. But he made it clear that would not be the morally right thing to do for the American people.
In a direct hit on his predecessor, Trump vowed that “The era for empty talk is over.”
After his standard remarks on illegal immigration, Trump reminded the crowd that the violent crime in Chicago must be stopped. He also commented on issues that he has not said much on before. He promised that the Keystone and Dakota Pipelines will only be built with pipe made in the United States and assembled by American workers.
Trump spoke for nearly 50 minutes with seriousness of purpose and in a calm tone.
While Trump was the main attraction, CPAC Friday featured many other events. The Young Jewish Conservatives held their annual Shabbos dinner. Invited guests included radio host Michael Medved and revered Rabbi Daniel Lapin of the American Alliance of Jews and Christians.
The Reagan Dinner featured Michael Reagan, who regaled attendees with stories of his beloved late father.
The Breitbart team honored the late Andrew Breitbart with a boat cruise for his lieutenants.
James O’Keefe of Project Veritas is continuing to prepare the public for another bombshell release of videotapes.
Trevor Loudon is promoting his movie about his book, “The Enemies Within.”
On the ultra-serious side, former United Nations Ambassador John Bolton remains a rock star. He continues to caution the world about the threat of radical Islam. The world may still not get it, but the CPAC audience certainly does. Another rock star was Nigel Farage, the man who led the British exit (Brexit) from the European Union. Farage was amused when asked what can be done to get France to exit the earth.
The main speakers for Saturday are expected to be EPA Director Scott Pruitt, former Pennsylvania Senator Rick Santorum, and Milwaukee Sheriff David Clarke. The Young Jewish Conservatives have several surprise guests up their sleeves. After the results of the straw poll come in, the final epilogue to CPAC will be the “Reaganpalooza” party in DC.