Mike Pence speech, CPAC, National Harbor
Vice President Mike Pence arrived at the Gaylord National Resort and Convention Center in Oxon Hill, MD, at around 7:30 p.m.
Mr. Pence, wearing an oxblood tie, an American flag pin and businessman's blue suit, walked onstage with wife Karen at CPAC at 7:50 p.m., after spending about 20 minutes in the hold room chatting with event organizers. He was introduced by Chris Cox, the top lobbyist for the NRA, who said he'd won the association's Charlton Heston Courage Under Fire Award. Mr. Pence was greeted with chants of "USA!" and "Pence!"
The event was open press, so I won't include his 22-minute speech in its entirety. But his address was, more or less, an updated version of his campaign stump speech with (in the estimation of your pooler) a slightly greater emphasis on his personal relationship with President Donald Trump.
Even here were the typical Pence-ian grace notes of self-deprecation. "He's know for his charisma," Mr. Pence said of the president, adding -- "and I'm, like, not."
He also made a point to repeat Mr. Trump's oft-disputed claim that the ticket had won "an historic victory" in 2016. There was also a fainter, kindler-gentler attack on the press, in which Mr. Pence charged that liberals and "their allies in the media are more than willing to amplify their defense of the status quo every single day."
There were a lot of applause lines but it seemed to your pooler that the two biggest hits were 1) Mr. Pence's dismissal of pro-Obamacare protesters who have been hounding Republicans at town halls during the Congressional recess – and 2) his call to rally round the "the Jewish State of Israel."
The vice president spent about seven minutes briskly working the small horseshoe of rope-line around the podium where he efficiently posed for photos. He was out the door by 7:22 p.m.