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CPAC takes action against Mitt Romney after voting for new witnesses, evidence in Trump trial

Impeachment backlash

Bill Pugliano/Getty Images

Matt Schlapp, chairman of the American Conservative Union, announced Friday that Sen. Mitt Romney (R-Utah) would not be invited to this year's gathering.

"BREAKING: The 'extreme conservative' and Junior Senator from the great state of Utah, @SenatorRomney is formally NOT invited to #CPAC2020," Schlapp said.

Schlapp's announcement came after Romney voted to allow new witnesses and documents in President Donald Trump's impeachment trial. Romney's vote was motivated by his desire to hear from John Bolton, Romney's spokesperson, Liz Johnson, said, The Hill reported.

Romney and Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine) — two of the most moderate Republican lawmakers — were the only two Republicans who voted in favor of additional witnesses and evidence.

However, because Democrats needed four Republican votes, Trump's trial will likely end next Wednesday in an acquittal without having heard from additional witnesses.

Romney has spoken at CPAC several times, including in 2012 when he secured the Republican nomination for president, and in 2013 after losing the election to then-President Barack Obama.

Sen. Mike Lee (R), who also represents Utah in the Senate, defended Romney on Friday, calling him a "good friend" and "excellent senator."

"Mitt Romney is a good friend and an excellent Senator. We have disagreed about a lot in this trial. But he has my respect for the thoughtfulness, integrity, and guts he has shown throughout this process," Lee said. "Utah and the Senate are lucky to have him."

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