Trump’s affect on the Republican Social gathering is proven as Conservatives collect

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© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: President Donald Trump speaks at the CPAC in Washington

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From Steve Holland

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Donald Trump’s influence on the Republican Party will be shown in full when an annual meeting of prominent US Conservatives begins in earnest on Friday. An important question is whether the former president will run again in four years.

Prominent Congressional Conservatives, including Senators Ted Cruz, Tom Cotton and Josh Hawley and Representatives Steve Scalise and Matt Gaetz, are among the Trump loyalists expected to speak at the Conservative Political Action Conference in Orlando, Florida, which Trump will be held on Sunday will address.

During Trump’s tumultuous final weeks in office, his supporters launched a deadly assault on the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6 to prevent Congress from confirming Democratic President Joe Biden’s election victory. A victory that Trump falsely claimed was marred by widespread fraud.

A total of 17 members of his party in Congress voted to indict or convict him of incitement, even though the Senate vote did not achieve the two-thirds majority required for conviction. Some prominent Republicans, including Senate minority leader Mitch McConnell, have beaten Trump up for his role in starting the fire, but more members are still speaking out for him.

Trump also faces legal challenges as Manhattan prosecutors conduct a criminal investigation into his family-run Trump organization.

Some advisors say they want Trump not to use his speech to extensively religiously religious the elections, but instead provide a roadmap for the Republicans to take back control of the House and Senate in the 2022 congressional election.

“Obviously he will speak of his belief that the election had big problems,” said a Trump adviser. “However, I believe and hope that he will focus on how we fight Biden’s socialist agenda for America and hope that it is about the future, not the past.”

Senator Lindsey Graham (NYSE :), one of Trump’s closest allies in Congress, told reporters at the Capitol he expected Trump to speak up about his political achievements, the downsides of Biden’s approach to immigration and energy, and a hopeful future for him America First Agenda.

Graham said he told Trump it was “a big mistake” to focus on the past election. When asked if he believed Trump would follow this advice, Graham replied, “We shall see.”

2024 CANDIDACY?

The 74-year-old Trump is expected to question the possibility of running for president again in 2024. That prospect complicates the lives of other Republican presidential candidates, including former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and former Vice President Mike Pence.

Pence, who was at the Capitol with his family, when rioters stormed in chant, “Hang Mike Pence!” is unlikely to attend this year’s CPAC.

Trump had repeatedly said that Pence had the power to stop the confirmation of election results when he did not.

CPAC is an American Conservative Union event that Matt Schlapp Trump is close to as Chairman. It’s a prime location for speakers who want to measure interest in whether or not they should run for president based on their enthusiasm.

On Friday’s list of speakers, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis is another potential candidate for 2024.

Many Republicans believe Trump will flirt with another run to freeze the field in 2024, but believe that he will eventually sign out of the running. Trump himself has privately thought about advisors he would like to lead.

“I wouldn’t expect him to announce anything in particular,” said a second Trump adviser. “There is a lot of wait and see right now among those named as likely candidates. But I think they’re all smart enough to know that they have to wait. They know that they can’t go up against the former president.” “

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