Sarah Palin declines CPAC keynote speaker invitation
After several days of negotiations with CPAC organizers, Former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin turned down an invitation to give the keynote speech for this year’s Conservative Political Action Conference.
American Conservative Union Chairman David Keene said Palin “expressed interest in wanting to come this year,” but added that it ultimately came down to “a scheduling issue,” ABC News reported Thursday.
“We’re disappointed that she wasn’t able to make it this year,” Keene said through a spokesman.
Palin did not appear at last year’s conference, citing the business dealings of Keene and the American Conservative Union, according to ABC News.
Palin pulled out of plans to speak at the 2008 and 2009 conferences, but she substituted her 2009 absence with a taped message that was shown to CPAC attendees.
Though she won’t be in attendance, Palin’s own political action committee, SarahPAC, will sponsor a Diamond Reception on CPAC’s opening night.
Last year, Palin placed third in CPAC’s straw poll.
Though Keene said last year that CPAC’s “relationship with the Palin staff has always been very cordial and respectful,” he said in a previous interview that the former governor needs to have thicker skin.
“In the period leading up to the [Alaska governor] resignation, she needed to get over the fact that people didn’t like her,” Keene told Newsmax. “Get over the fact that she harbored resentment for the McCain people that used her…[S]he had to begin to move on with what she needed to establish in terms of her own image, to move to the next level. And she delayed doing that.”