Trump claims Pence and DeSantis too boring for CPAC as he warns he’s preparing ‘monster’ speech

The former president says ‘the crowds have no interest in anything they have to say’

Eric Garcia
Thursday 02 March 2023 16:34 GMT
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Former president Donald Trump criticised former vice president Mike Pence and Florida Governor Ron DeSantis of Florida for skipping the Conservative Political Action Conference, as Mr Trump himself gets ready to speak this weekend.

The former president put out a remark on his Truth Social networking platform criticising his former VP and his closest political rival for missing the conservative gathering. Mr Pence and Mr DeSantis are just two high-profile Republians to skip the conservative confab. Top Republican congressional leaders are also avoiding the event.

“The only reason certain ‘candidates’ won’t be going to CPAC is because the crowds have no interest in anything they have to say. They’ve heard it all before, and don’t want to hear it again,” Mr Trump said.

“But my speech, on Saturday night, is already a sold out ‘monster,’” he said. “They are trying to expand the room and space. We’ll have a great time at CPAC, we always do. See you there, and don’t forget to vote in the important Straw Poll!”

Mr DeSantis will not attend summit, a major gathering of conservative activists, after Florida hosted the last two annual gatherings. Rather, he will speak to the Club for Growth’s gathering for donors.

The former president has regularly antagonised the governor, who has become a favourite of major financial donors for keeping the state open during the Covid-19 pandemic and for his opposition to LGBT+ rights. Mr Trump had previously endorsed Mr DeSantis in the 2018 Republican gubernatorial primary.

Mr Pence served as Mr Trump’s vice president for four years. But he later earned the scorn of his boss for not working to overturn the 2020 presidential election results on 6 January 2021 while presiding over the certification of the election. That led to Capitol rioters yelling “hang Mike Pence.”

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