For the last two years at least, when Ron Paul supporters were showing up in droves to help him win the straw poll, CPAC appeared to be becoming a more hospitable place for libertarians, constitutionalists, paleocons and other outside the mainstream rightists. I wonder if the CPAC Powers That Be got spooked by this, because CPAC (which started today) certainly appears to be reverting to mainstream interventionist movement “conservative” form.
Check out the list of speakers. It would be hard to imagine a more cookie-cutter selection of interventionist movement “cons” if you tried. I don’t see an easily identifiable non-interventionist in the whole lot. Grover Norquist and Phyllis Schlafly have nodded toward non-interventionism at times, but neither is identifiably such as far as I am concerned.
Romney, Gingrich and Santorum will be there. Ron Paul will not. At first there was some consternation among Ron Paul supporters who assumed he had not been invited, but he was invited and declined saying that he had campaigning to do. I don’t know this, but I suspect he and his team knew it wouldn’t necessarily be a friendly environment this year since he wasn’t making an all out effort to get his supporters there to vote in the straw poll.