What CPAC Has to Offer Conservatives

Education and camaraderie are two of the reasons to attend.

By Amelia Hamilton Published on February 25, 2015

This week, conservatives from around the world will descend upon the Washington, DC area for the annual Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC), billed as “the nation’s largest gathering of conservatives.” CPAC is the official event of The American Conservative Union, which was founded in 1964.  This makes it the “oldest and largest grassroots conservative organization in the nation,” and the conference itself began in 1973. There are a lot of political conferences, so what makes this one different? Why is social media overrun with people getting on planes and tweeting their hearts out?

As a conservative blogger, I spend a lot of time traveling to various conferences. While each has something different to offer, CPAC is in a league of its own. CPAC is huge. The conference itself has a lot to offer. With speakers from politicians and political hopefuls to industry leaders and journalists, you’ll get to hear some of your favorites. The panels will cover conservative issues from the experts. It’s a one-stop shop for the speakers you want to see and hear.

The panels and speakers are second to none, and give attendees plenty to experience, write and tweet about. It’s food for thought, and energizing into the year ahead. With 2016 sure to be here before we know it, it will interesting to see how GOP hopefuls jockey for position and what issues they hit in their speeches as they seek to brand themselves. The speeches will be incredible, but we could stay at home and watch the live stream. Why make the trip? The camaraderie.

CPAC sometimes seems as though the tail is wagging the dog, with many attendees making the trip for meetings and networking rather than to attend the conference itself. Quite simply, many people go only because so many other people go. It has spawned other on-site meetings, unofficial parties and ad hoc gatherings, which are essential, especially for those who work in or write about politics or political issues.

For most people, it’s a rare chance to immerse oneself in something one believes in and spend a few days with like-minded people. We see each other on Twitter and at conferences. Having so many of us together in one place, at the same conference, is something of a family reunion. This is a time for us to get energized and ready to head home and continue to fight for what we believe.

CPAC, here we come.


Amelia Hamilton is an Associate Editor of The Stream, a conservative blogger and author of the Growing Patriots series of children’s books. A lifelong writer and patriot, she also loves Red Wings hockey, old cars, old movies and apple juice. Amelia has a master’s degree in both English and 18th-century history from the University of St. Andrews in Scotland, and a postgraduate diploma in fine & decorative arts from Christie’s London. Her labrador, Virgil, can usually be found at her side.

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