The Conservative Political Action Conference has so far been a mostly agreeable affair, with the only major public disagreement happening over whether a Republican gay rights group, GOProud, should be banned from the conference.
But leaked emails sent between organizers of one of the conference's most-coveted events, the annual BlogBash gathering for right-wing bloggers, seems to indicate a bigger divide between CPAC's young and old guard.
Those emails show prominent conservative blogger Ali Akbar, who put on BlogBash Thursday night, was deeply worried about what some attendees might do if the old guard of CPAC came to the event. He was particularly worried about a visit from Al Cardenas, who oversees CPAC, and Rep. Bob Goodlatte of Virginia, who has received honors for his conservative voting record.
"The Chairman knows most of that room disagrees with the ACU Board on a variety of issues. But if a blogger is looking to make news at BlogBash by making a fool of anyone—they're going to fin[d] themselves in the rain," Akbar wrote to Adrienne Royer, who helped organize BlogBash and is incidentally the creator of the viral "what to wear to CPAC" infographic.
Akbar also told Royer that "[the] same goes for Goodlatte and his whole SOPA mess." Goodlatte was an original sponsor of the Stop Online Piracy Act, legislation to combat online piracy that died after hundreds of websites rose up to fight against it.
Akbar acknowledged to Whispers Thursday night there was a clear divide between the young and old guard at CPAC over issues like gay rights and internet freedom. But he said he had sent the emails because he "has a policy to be respectful of guests at my events"—even if he disagreed with them.
Despite Akbar's fears, there weren't any incidents at BlogBash Thursday night, though there were reports of a "few troublemakers" outside the door. Whispers did not see Cardenas at the event, and Goodlatte seemed to be enjoying his time there.
But the biggest applause line of the night went to an appearance by young firebrand Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas, who got on stage without his suit jacket and told the bloggers in attendance that they "scare the hell out of Washington."