Washington (CNN) — Potential Republican presidential candidates Mitt Romney, Sen. John Thune, Tim Pawlenty and Rep. Ron Paul all get their chance Friday to address the annual Conservative Political Action Conference — a gathering of more than 10,000 GOP activists from across the country.
The list of speakers for the three-day meeting is a virtual “Who’s Who” of GOP presidential politics.
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From TALKING POINTS MEMO:
Michele Bachmann’s freshly minted Tea Party Caucus has its first member of GOP leadership: Republican Conference Chairman Mike Pence.
At a press availability this afternoon, Pence was enthusiastic. “You betcha,” Pence said when asked if he’d join.
Rep. Michele Bachmann’s call for a media investigation into “anti-American” members of Congress may have been the macaca — or McCarthy — moment of 2008, but it has also given the Minnesota Republican something she’s been angling for since arriving in Congress two years ago: the national spotlight.
“I think that she’s a media hound first and foremost,” said [a Minnesota GOP operative close to Bachmann]. “That has been her biggest goal from Day One: to be in the media spotlight, to be a representative who is the spokesman for the Republican Party — and she’s made that a very concerted effort, to be in the spotlight as much as possible.
It was this willingness that found Bachmann on “Hardball” with Chris Matthews on Friday. As Matthews explained it to Politico, one of his bookers called John McCain’s presidential campaign early in the day for help in filling a hard-to-book Friday afternoon slot.
The campaign, Matthews said, suggested the ever-willing Bachmann.