Photo courtesy CPAC/Facebook
We all want Orlando to become a destination for conventions again but, wow, be careful what you wish for.
CPAC — the Conservative Political Action Conference — will not
be taking place in its usual Washington D.C. area environs next year, but instead right here in the City Beautiful
. (Thanks again for reopening Florida so completely, Gov. DeSantis.)
As reported by WESH
, CPAC — the large yearly gathering of conservative activists — will be going down at the Hyatt Regency on International Drive on Feb. 25-28, 2021.
NPR summarizes CPAC succinctly as
"equal parts political rally, conservative boot camp, recruiting tool, trade show and merchandise mart."
Based on past attendance numbers, the event could bring as many as 20,000 attendees to the Orlando area. And since Trump has been a keynote speaker for the last few CPACs — his 2020 CPAC address clocked in at a staggering two-plus hours with the surreal highlight of Trump hugging and kissing an onstage flag
— it's a safe bet that he'll be a 2021 headliner. Which means even more (mostly mask-averse) people streaming into Orlando from all over the country.
Obviously, there are concerns that CPAC could become a local superspreader event. CPAC's record on that front isn't so good. The Washingtonian
called the Feb. 2020 CPAC a "coronavirus bonanza
," complete with a VIP ticketholder who later tested positive for COVID-19
being in close contact with scores of Republican legislators and lobbyists. News outlets requested journalists who covered the event to self-quarantine in the days following.
American Conservative Union — the group that organizes CPAC —communications director Ian Walters told Fox News
that “we intend to abide by the regulations put forth” by Orange County next year. Time will tell.
CPAC 2021 will be part of the organization's ongoing "America vs. Socialism
" tour. To conscript in this epic struggle, tickets to CPAC Orlando are currently running $330-$7,500
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