Trump To Use CPAC To Quiet Talk Of Rifts In White House

The Conservative Political Action Conference on Thursday will cheer the first Republican White House officials to attend the gathering in almost a decade. But many will also be watching to see if high-level Trump administration officials can put down rumors that they are having trouble working together.

Conservatives who travel to the Gaylord Hotel in Maryland's National Harbor will be greeted by a generous lineup of President Trump's closest advisers, including White House chief of staff Reince Priebus, senior strategist Steve Bannon and counselor Kellyanne Conway. They will also hear from newly minted Education Secretary Betsy DeVos and Vice President Mike Pence.

They will be followed on Friday morning by Trump, whose decision to skip last year's confab was categorized as a "missed opportunity" by CPAC organizers. Scott Pruitt, the newest director of the Environmental Protection Agency and a figure scorned by the left, will close the three-day summit on Saturday.

"A lot of this is optics. It is to send a message that this administration is unified and to convey to folks who are on the frontlines back home in their communities that President Trump is going to succeed in delivering on his promises," said Republican strategist Ford O'Connell.

"It's a brilliant move," O'Connell said. "There's always skeptics out there so this gives them a chance to speak directly to those individuals and at the same time try to bring in new converts to the administration." 

Read more from Gabby Morrongiello at The Washington Examiner

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