Pence reportedly declines CPAC invitation after Trump announces attendance

Trump to make 1st post-presidential appearance at upcoming conservative gathering in Florida

The 2021 Conservative Political Action Conference, which kicks off Thursday, appears to remain aligned behind Donald Trump, even as leading Republicans have condemned and clashed publicly with the former president.

The appearance is scheduled for Sunday, 28 February at the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC), one of the country's largest annual gatherings of political conservatives.

Trump is expected to use the speech to talk about the future of the Republican Party and the conservative movement, as well as to criticize President Joe Biden's efforts to undo Trump's immigration policies, according to a person who spoke on condition of anonymity to discuss the plans.

Senior Republicans fear that the widening rift between Mr Trump's supporters and his opponents within the party could cost the party dear in the mid-terms.

Trump and his wife, Melania, arrive at the Palm Beach International Airport in West Palm Beach, Fla., after leaving the White House on January 20. Trump made a series of media appearance since leaving office Wednesday with outlets such as Fox News and Newsmax after radio host Rush Limbaugh died, NBC News reports.

"I won't say yet but we have tremendous support. And I'm looking at poll numbers that are through the roof", he said confidently. His 2011 speech is seen as the launch of his political career in the Republican Party.

Trump breaks post-impeachment trial silence to lash out at Mitch McConnell
He did not seek to defend Trump's actions, and in statements and interviews has continued to blame Trump for the violence . Jeff Flake , a former Republican senator from Arizona, has said the party should move on from Trump.

Although Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, a Kentucky Republican, voted to acquit Trump, he said this was because he did not believe it was constitutional to hold a Senate trial for a president after he'd left office.

Trump called McConnell "a dour, sullen, and unsmiling political hack" this week and warned that if Republican senators stayed with him "they will not win again".

Small numbers of asylum seekers, majority Central Americans forced to wait in Mexico under Trump, have also begun crossing into the United States as their cases are being processed.

Mike Pompeo, who served as Trump's secretary of state; Ben Carson, who served as secretary of housing and urban development; and Sarah Huckabee Sanders, the former White House press secretary now vying to become the next Arkansas governor, are set to speak at the event along with a number of other former Trump administration officials.

Lawmakers from his Democratic Party have unveiled legislation to create a path to citizenship for 11 million undocumented immigrants, reversing Trump's hardline policies.

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