BEST OF CPAC: Attendees Want Trump 2024, Say Liz Cheney is a ‘Traitor’ and Biden is Not Their President
Mediaite was on the ground for this year’s Conservative Political Action Conference. We spoke to dozens of attendees about who they want to see run in 2024, whether lawmakers like Liz Cheney and Mitch McConnell have a place in the Republican party, and if they are concerned about attending an indoor conference during the coronavirus pandemic. We also asked if they still watch Fox News, the answer to which you can check out here.
Little surprise, President Donald Trump was the top pick to run in 2024. But his support was not universal. A few attendees Mediaite spoke to said they thought Trump’s time will have passed by 2024, and that they were excited about new names like Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis and South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem.
Trump won the CPAC straw poll for 2024 candidates, but with 55% of the vote. 68% of attendees said they wanted to see Trump run again.
Almost all the attendees Mediaite interviewed said they believed Trump’s baseless claim the election was stolen from him by now-President Joe Biden.
“We know the election was stolen,” said Toni Ringlein. “[Trump] is still my president. Biden will never, ever, ever be by president.”
“This election was stolen!” shouted MyPillow CEO Mike Lindell. He also claimed Trump actually received 80 million votes (he received 74 million).
The attendees dismissed the fact that Trump’s legal efforts to prove the election was stolen failed in court (some of his challenges were tossed by judges he appointed).
When asked about Republicans like Liz Cheney who voted to impeach Trump, the attendees were scathing.
“They traitors,” Toni Ringlein said.
“They were not welcome [at CPAC] for good reason. They are traitors,” said Michael Szefc. “They’re RINOS.”
The issue of Covid-19 loomed large at the conference, held in Orlando, Florida due to the state’s relaxed restrictions. Still, the Hyatt hotel insisted that attendees wear masks indoors, in an effort to protect patrons against a virus that has killed more than 500,000 Americans in the last year. Police, hotel security and CPAC officials spent much of the weekend asking attendees to put on their masks.
One woman in a MAGA cowboy hat compared Covid-19 restrictions to Nazi Germany.
“The virus may be real, but everything surrounding it is a total scam,” said Tony Ringlein. “Especially these face coverings, what they do to oppress people.”
Lady MAGA USA, a “drag queen for Trump,” said he has “absolutely zero concerns” about Covid-19 because he already had the virus.
“It was terrible. It was miserable. I lost my sense of taste and smell for six days. But I survived,” Lady MAGA said.
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