Donald Trump: ‘Hated to Cancel’ CPAC, ‘We’ll Win Before’ the Convention

Trump Podium Point APMatt Rourke
AP/Matt Rourke
Washington, DC

GOP frontrunner Donald Trump said he didn’t go to the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) hosted by the American Conservative Union (ACU) on Saturday morning because he wanted to campaign in Kansas ahead of the state’s caucuses.

“I wanted to go to Kansas. I felt I had an obligation,” the real estate mogul responded to a reporter’s question about not attending CPAC during a press conference in West Palm Beach, Florida late Saturday night.

“I’ve been to CPAC from the beginning. I like it, I respect the people at CPAC. I respect Matt a great deal. I hated to cancel, but I really am doing something that’s important,” he said. “I’m campaigning to be president. Had I not gone to Kansas this morning, I would not have done as well as I did. I came in second place, so it was a very important thing.”

Trump was originally scheduled to speak at CPAC Saturday morning but instead went to Kansas to campaign.

“We have a good relationship with him. We have respect for him,” Schlapp said during an interview on Fox News about Trump canceling his CPAC appearance, blaming it on Trump not wanting to agree to the specified time and format. “There was a format that everyone agreed to, that’s the way it has to be for every candidate. We simply will have no flexibility.”

“This was simply a fact that I wanted to campaign,” Trump said, responding to Shlapp suggesting Trump didn’t agree to CPAC’s format.

Another reporter later asked the billionaire if he thinks there will be a contested convention.

“I think we’ll win before” the convention, Trump responded. “The only way we guarantee victory is to knock them out,” Trump said, referencing obtaining enough delegates to clinch the nomination.

“We’re on our path to do that. We think we’re going to do very well in Florida,” Trump added, referencing the Sunshine state’s 99 delegates, which are winner-take-all.

He also touted his two wins on Super Saturday, saying, “Louisiana nd Kentucky tonight were the two big ones.”