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Sen. Banks to speak at CPAC

Sen. Jim Banks, R-Columbia City, will address the 2014 Conservative Political Action Conference Saturday afternoon in Maryland as one of the rising stars selected as part of this year's Top 10 Conservatives Under 40.

"While it's exciting to be recognized for individual accomplishment, I view this more as a stamp of approval for the great work being done by conservatives in Indiana," Banks said. "We are proving to Washington, D.C., liberals that conservative ideas are not just an ideological choice, but a common sense way to make life better for our fellow Americans."

The Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC), a project of the American Conservative Union (ACU), has been held annually since 1973. Past speakers have included presidents, vice presidents, and notable figures in conservative politics. Former Indiana Governor Mitch Daniels keynoted the annual CPAC Reagan Dinner in 2011.

"We are pleased to announce that Senator Jim Banks has been selected as one of our top ten conservatives under forty," said ACU Chairman Al Cardenas. "Our focus at CPAC has always been to showcase rising stars in the conservative movement. The depth and diversity of young leaders like Senator Banks provides hope for America's future as we face tough challenges ahead."

His appearance precedes a two-week Navy call-up to Rhode Island to complete his 15-month Navy Supply Corps School training. It is his fourth trip in the last 18 months.

Banks will miss the last week of the legislative session.

He has served in the Senate since 2010, representing Wabash County and portions of Whitley, Huntington and Grant counties.

To contact Niki Kelly email her at nkelly@jg.net or follow her on Twitter @nkellyatJG.