Basque Fry

Join Morning in Nevada PAC & the American Conservative Union (ACU) 

for the can't-miss, two-day event for grassroots Republicans & conservatives! 

The Inaugural CPAC West & 5th Annual Basque Fry




Event Schedule:

Friday, September 13th: Conference speakers and panels in Reno, Nevada—click here to register now! (FREE!)

Saturday, September 14th: 5th Annual Basque Fry at Corley Ranch in Gardnerville, Nevada


Featured Basque Fry Speakers


Mercedes Schlapp


Mercedes Viana Schlapp is a Senior Advisor for the Trump Pence campaign.  For the last two years, she served as Assistant to the President and Senior Advisor for Strategic Communications in The White House. Previously, she was a columnist for The Washington Times, a FOX News Contributor, and a co-host of a weekly radio show, CPAC 365, with her husband and American Conservative Union Chairman Matt Schlapp on Sirius XM Patriot.

Mercedes is the former Director of Specialty Media for President George W. Bush in The White House where she served as a spokesperson for the president. Mercedes frequently appears on Sunday shows and several FOX News programs, including Special Report, Hannity, America’s Newsroom, Fox and Friends, Outnumbered, and The Story. She also has appeared on NBC, ABC, MSNBC, PBS and CNN. A first generation Cuban-American and raised in Miami, Florida, she is fluent in Spanish and also provides political commentary for Univision, Telemundo, CNN en Español and national Spanish radio.

Inspired by her father, who was held as a political prisoner in Fidel Castro’s Cuba in the 1960s, Mercedes discovered her passion for politics at a young age. Her father’s experience in Cuba gave her a clear understanding of the need to protect freedom and democracy in the United States and around the world.

Mercedes has worked on both local and national political campaigns including the 2000 and 2004 presidential campaigns for President George W. Bush and served as a surrogate for President Donald J. Trump. She also worked at the Republican National Committee where she hosted an on-line show in both English and Spanish and interviewed national surrogates on current events.

As co-founder of Cove Strategies, Mercedes developed and implemented media strategy for corporate and non-profit organizations.

Mercedes is a native of Miami, Florida, a graduate of Florida International University and received a Masters degree from The George Washington University. She and her husband, Matt, live in Virginia with their five daughters.


Matt Schlapp


Matt Schlapp is the Chairman of the American Conservative Union, the nation’s original grassroots conservative organization. During his five-year tenure as chairman, ACU has almost tripled in size, expanded CPAC to reach 25 million live viewers and 1 billion Twitter impressions at the most recent CPAC. ACU also hosts dozens of additional events, including Battleground CPACs in the US and international CPACs abroad.

Schlapp worked as a Regional Political Director for George W. Bush’s 2000 campaign and served as the White House Political Director during the president’s re-election.

Schlapp’s congressional experience began during the historic Republican wave of 1994 in which he served Representative Todd Tiahrt (R-KS) as Chief of Staff for five years. During Schlapp’s tenure, Tiahrt averaged an ACU Rating of 98%.

Schlapp also owns a consulting practice through which he advises corporate and nonprofit clients on politics, policy and communications. He is a contributor to The Hill and appears regularly on news programs.

Schlapp is a member of the Order of the Knights of Malta and serves on the Board of Governors of the Boys and Girls Club of America. He is a graduate of University of Notre Dame, where he started a conservative student magazine, and earned an M.P.A. at Wichita State University.

Matt and his wife Mercedes have five young daughters and are parishioners of St. Mary’s Catholic Church in Old Town Alexandria, Virginia.


Corey Lewandowski


Mr. Lewandowski currently serves as a Senior Advisor to Vice President Pence’s PAC, the Great America Committee. Prior to this role, he was both Chief Political Adviser and Campaign Manager to Donald J. Trump for President, Inc.  In those roles, he oversaw all aspects of a historic presidential campaign where Donald J. Trump won 38 Republican primaries and caucuses, and received more votes than any presidential candidate in the history of the Republican Party.  Through Mr. Lewandowski’s leadership, Mr. Trump secured the Republican nomination for President of the United States while only spending a fraction of the money his competitors spent over the same period of time. Mr. Lewandowski is credited with running a skillfully disruptive political campaign and is often cited as a visionary on understanding the moods and pulse of the American people.

He previously served as the National Director of Voter Registration of Americans for Prosperity and Americans for Prosperity Foundation. He was also the former East Coast Regional Director for both organizations and served as the AFP and AFPF State Director for New Hampshire, starting the chapters for these groups in 2008.

Prior to his tenure at AFP and AFP Foundation, Mr. Lewandowski served as Executive Director of the New England Seafood Producers’ Association (NESPA), representing the vast New England seafood interests to state and federal government officials. 

Mr. Lewandowski worked as the Legislative Political Director, Northeast Region, for the Republican National Committee (RNC), as well as in senior positions with several Members of Congress. 

Mr. Lewandowski has made numerous, regular appearances on Fox News, Fox Business, ABC, NBC, MSNBC, CBS and CNN, as well as serving as a on-the-record spokesman to major print outlets such as the Wall Street Journal, the Washington Post, the New York Times, USA Today, The Guardian, The Daily Mail, the Boston Globe, and numerous other print and on-line publications. He was also named “Power Player of the Week” by Fox News Sunday for his contribution to the Trump campaign. 

Mr. Lewandowski received his M.A in Political Science from American University, Washington, D.C., and his B.A in Political Science from the University of Massachusetts. He also attended the Naval War College. 

Mr. Lewandowski lives in Windham, New Hampshire with his wife and their four children.


More speakers to be announced soon!