Donald Trump and Mike Pence spent four years forging a productive working relationship.
But at the end, some Trump supporters felt Pence betrayed the President.
And now Donald Trump delivered this ultimatum about Mike Pence that led to one response.
Mike Pence reportedly declined an invitation to speak at the Conservative Political Action Committee conference.
CPAC serves as a four day meeting where leaders gather to present their vision of conservatism and where the movement goes to a crowd of activists.
Conservative Political Action Conference Executive Director Dan Schneider expressed his appreciation that former President Trump would speak to the crowd, but stated that Pence made a mistake by turning down the group’s invite.
“We are pleased that the president will be joining us, and we’re disappointed the vice president’s not coming. We think it’s a mistake for him not to come. We conservatives think of Vice President Pence with great honor and dignity. He is a real champion of conservatism,” Schneider told MSNBC.
Mike Pence spoke at CPAC over a dozen times and no one could figure out why Pence would turn down a chance to deliver a high-profile speech in his first public appearance since leaving office.
The Washington Examiner attempted to explain Pence’s decision by reporting that Donald Trump delivered an ultimatum to CPAC organizers that he would not attend if Mike Pence delivered a speech.
“As far as Trump is concerned, there is no way back for Pence, a source close to the president said. The source added that Trump did not want to share a stage with his former deputy,” the Examiner reported.
This story was immediately debunked by two on-the-record sources who explained that not only did Trump never make such a threat about skipping CPAC if Pence spoke, but that Trump and Pence maintain a good relationship and speak regularly by phone.
American Conservative Union Chairman Matt Schlapp—whose organization sponsors CPAC—denounced the story and claimed the idea of Pence and Trump at odds was a “fake feud.”
“Mercy and I just talked to @Mike_Pence tonight and he was relaying very warm stories of how kind the President was to him during their final time in the WH and how they have been keeping in touch on the phone,” Schlapp wrote on Twitter.
Trump aide Jason Miller also knocked down the Examiner’s reporting as “patently false.”
“This story is patently false, and these ‘anonymously sourced’ attacks designed to create division are why people distrust the media. No such demand or request was ever made by President Trump, and in fact, President Trump and Vice President Pence had a great call last week!” Miller responded on social media.
Trump’s speech to CPAC will make it clear that Trump is still the leader of the GOP and that Trump’s version of “America First” conservatism is the key to the Republican Party winning elections in the future.
It is unclear why Mike Pence skipped CPAC.
But what is known is that Donald Trump never threatened to skip CPAC if Pence attended and that the two still regularly speak.
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