The Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC), is an annual political conference attended by conservative students, activists, media personnel, and elected officials from all across the United States.
Last year, I attended CPAC 2015 for the first time and got so much out of it. From networking with the heads of IJReview, to attending a Breitbart reception with Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX), to meeting fellow conservative students (many of which I’m still in contact with), to small talk with Congressmen and a majority of the 2016 presidential candidates, the experience was certainly worthwhile.
The atmosphere of CPAC 2015 was also extremely enjoyable.
Having the opportunity to hear from establishment Republicans like Newt Gingrich, Jeb Bush, and others who at the time were united together with the common goal of defeating Hillary Clinton in November of 2016 was refreshing to say the least.
Now lets fast forward to CPAC 2016:
This year, I was generously offered an invitation to join in on a group trip to National Harbor for CPAC 2016. Despite the hotel and luncheons already paid for, I still couldn’t pull myself to go for several reasons:
Reason number one: I can no longer be around people whose lives are so devoid of actual meaning that they have to meddle in the drama of people they don’t know personally, have no history with, and most strikingly have never had a genuine conversation with. How can one legitimately claim to be an adult after spending hundreds of dollars to attend CPAC only to listen to hours of speeches full of scripted rhetoric and then proceed to follow 2016 hopefuls and “media celebrities” around with an iPhone camera for an entire weekend? Is it to feel special and connected? And trust me, this applies to the majority of CPAC attendees.
Reason number two: This election has turned into a bad episode of reality TV, where “he said she said” is prioritized over actual policy debate (which is kind of crucial to electing the next president of the United States). How did we get to this point? There are many reasons, however the biggest one seems to be that media sensationalism sells in the digital age (this is why your 14-year-old daughter is so sure that Donald Trump is the next Adolf Hitler). The back and forth name-calling by the Republican candidates is so petty that it makes being a Republican in 2016 repugnant.
Fox News and CNN have shown time and time again, that they care more about ratings and stirring up controversy than actual policy debate, yet whine and claim innocence for the rise of Donald Trump. In essence, Fox News and the mainstream media created Donald Trump through enormous amounts of air time and feeding the country the same kind of garbage we hoped would only exist on E!’s Keeping Up With The Kardashians.
Reason number three: I can no longer be around people still stating that they are the party of Lincoln and Reagan as if that still holds some kind of weight in 2016. Clearly, being the party of Lincoln and Reagan didn’t get Republicans the support they thought it would in 2016.
Who’s the spokesperson for this statement? Marco Rubio and his delusional following.
Marco Rubio is not a disciple of Ronald Reagan. I do not believe for one second Ronald Reagan would have stooped to Donald Trump’s level with the name calling or bickering (which sadly backfired on Rubio).
Marco Rubio is however, a junior Senator with the worst voting record in the Senate who goes around the country preaching how he is going to win the Republican nomination like the guy who was going to win the lottery had he not been three numbers off.
It’s actually hysterical, the same students shamelessly pushing the #NeverTrump hashtag on Facebook and Twitter are some of the same students I have on video trying to get a picture signed by Donald Trump after his speech at CPAC 2015
I’m not going to call them opportunists, because that’s an unfair label to give an 18-23 year old who like myself at a time, just wanted to get out there for as many pictures, signatures, and “moments” from individuals society puts on a pedestal to share with family and friends.
Reason number four: CPAC 2016 was undoubtedly going to be Anti-Trump.
Spending the weekend listening to oh-so-intelligent 30-something conservative journalists talk about how they can stop Trump? I’d rather go to the dentist for a root canal.
The time to “stop Trump” isn’t now — it was back in August when know-it-all conservatives laughed at the idea of a Trump campaign and were so certain he wouldn’t make it past December.
If you’ve been living under a rock, Donald Trump essentially walked into the Republicans invite-only dinner and started flipping the tables upside down.
Now, the Republican establishment has resorted to any last attempt to stop Trump that they possibly can, like having 2012 Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney give a condescending speech like the elitist he is, telling people who they should and should not vote for in this election.
The time to stop Trump’s road to the nomination is long over, and no amount of “playing the Trump game” or Koch dollars will prove otherwise.