Make us your home page
Instagram

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Trump snubs CPAC, cancels appearance so he can campaign in Kansas (w/video)

Donald Trump has canceled a scheduled speech today at the Conservative Political Action Conference, snubbing a gathering of activists while possibly averting an ugly media scene.

The American Conservative Union, CPAC's sponsors, announced the snub with a short tweet, following a morning of rumors that Trump would dodge the conference.

"Very disappointed @realDonaldTrump has decided at the last minute to drop out of #CPAC — his choice sends a clear message to conservatives."

In a statement minutes later, Trump's campaign said the candidate had scheduled a Saturday speech in Wichita, hours before Kansas' competitive caucuses begin.

"He will also be speaking at the Kansas Caucus and then departing for Orlando, Fla., and a crowd of approximately 20,000 people or more," Trump's campaign announced. "Because of this, he will not be able to speak at CPAC as he has done for many consecutive years. Mr. Trump would like to thank Matt Schlapp and all of the executives at CPAC and looks forward to returning next year, hopefully as President of the United States."

But even a glance around the halls of the Gaylord National Resort and Convention Center in National Harbor, Md., suggested that Trump was heading for a disaster. He was scheduled to speak at 8:30 a.m., kicking off a day often sapped of energy by activists straggling in after sleeping off their Friday nights. He was likely to confront a protest or walkout from some activists, including one led by William Temple, a tea party activist.

"We planned one," said Ben Howe, a contributing editor at RedState. "Looks like he heard about it."

He also was more than likely to face an unfamiliar sight on the Trump trail: a half-empty room. Trump's Secret Service protection would have mandated a security checkpoint, and the one laid out for Ben Carson on Friday created a traffic snarl, with activists lining up for 30 minutes or more.

Debate ratings: Fox News drew the highest ratings for a Republican debate since December, with 16.9 million viewers tuning in Thursday night.

The debate reunited front-runner Donald Trump and moderator Megyn Kelly on the stage for the first time since August.

The ratings Thursday represent the fourth-highest viewership for a debate ever. The numbers were significantly higher than the 12.5 million viewers that watched the late January debate on Fox News that Trump refused to join because of Kelly's involvement.

The viewership total also is the largest since CNN's debate in December, which drew more than 18 million viewers. Fox News holds the record for the most-watched primary debate: Its August debate had 24 million viewers.

Information from the New York Times was used in this report.

Trump making 2 stops in Florida

Republican front-runner Donald Trump has two events planned today in Florida. The businessman is expected to appear at a rally on the University of Central Florida's campus in Orlando. The time of that rally has been moved from noon to 2 p.m. He also has a news conference planned at his

Mar-a-Lago estate in Palm Beach at 9 p.m.

Orlando Sentinel and Times wires

Trump snubs CPAC, cancels appearance so he can campaign in Kansas (w/video) 03/04/16 [Last modified: Friday, March 4, 2016 10:10pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

Copyright: For copyright information, please check with the distributor of this item, Washington Post.
    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Pinellas licensing board asks Sen. Jack Latvala for $500,000 loan

    Local Government

    The troubled Pinellas County agency that regulates contractors wants Sen. Jack Latvala to help it get a $500,000 lifeline from the state to stay afloat.

    State Sen . Jack Latvala, R- Clearwater, is being asked to help the Pinellas County Construction Licensing Board get $500,000 from the state so it can stay open beyond February.  [SCOTT KEELER   |   Times]
  2. FHP: 55-year-old pedestrian struck, killed by car in Largo

    Accidents

    LARGO — A 55-year-old St. Petersburg man died late Saturday after he walked into the path of a car on Ulmerton Road, according to the Florida Highway Patrol.

  3. Study offers warning for Florida strawberry farmers from global warming

    Agriculture

    LAKELAND — Florida strawberry growers already have experienced a dress rehearsal for the impacts of climate change during the past two seasons.

     Carl Grooms shows off some of his strawberries at Fancy Farms near Plant City Tuesday, Feb. 17, 2015.  Grooms, President of Fancy Farms. [JAMES BORCHUCK  |  Times]
  4. Two Interstate 275 tractor-trailer crashes cause delays in Tampa

    Accidents

    TAMPA — Two tractor-trailers driving in opposite directions on Interstate 275 crashed Sunday within a mile of each other, causing lane closures on both sides for much of the morning.

    Two tractor-trailers going opposite directions on Interstate 275 in Tampa crashed Sunday morning, closing lanes on each side, according to the Florida Highway Patrol. [Florida Highway Patrol]
  5. Read Anthony Scaramucci's old tweets. You'll understand why he deleted them

    National

    New White House communications director Anthony Scaramucci hasn't always shared the political views of the administration he now serves.

    Anthony Scaramucci, incoming White House communications director, takes questions as he speaks in the briefing room at the White House on Friday. [ Washington Post photo by by Jabin Botsford]