- Associated Press - Friday, March 28, 2014

RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) - Conservatives gaining more clout in North Carolina politics are gathering again to learn about policy issues and how to influence voters while seeking to get energized from state and national speakers.

About 500 people were expected to attend the annual Conservative Leadership Conference starting Friday and organized by the right-leaning Civitas Institute.

Gov. Pat McCrory, Lt. Gov. Dan Forest, Utah Sen. Mike Lee and conservative commentator Ann Coulter are among the scheduled speakers for the two-day conference at a Raleigh hotel. Americans for Prosperity President Tim Phillips and FreedomWorks CEO Matt Kibbe also are planning to attend.

Republicans control both the General Assembly and hold the Executive Mansion simultaneously for the first time in more than 140 years.

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