December 08, 2003

Honoring the rebel

Robert Novak on Rep. Mike Pence, CPAC and Bush's Medicare bill:

Rep. Mike Pence of Indiana, who led conservative rebels against President Bush's Medicare bill, will deliver the keynote address at the 2004 Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) in Washington -- an honor accorded to Bush stalwarts the past three years.

Vice President Dick Cheney delivered the keynote in 2003, then-Republican National Chairman Marc Racicot in 2002 and then-Republican National Chairman (and Governor of Virginia) Jim Gilmore in 2001. Next year, CPAC also will honor Pence and 24 other House Republicans who broke party ranks to vote no on Medicare.

A footnote: Eight of nine lobbyists who had confirmed contributions for a Pence fund-raiser canceled when the congressman opposed the president on Medicare. Pence instructed aides not to show him names of the canceled donors.