REPORT: CPAC Officials Feigned Dismay at Capitol Riot, Then Invited Parade of Insurrectionists to Speak at Convention
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Government watchdog Accountable.US released a report today finding that despite public condemnations of the deadly January 6 Capitol riot from CPAC and the American Conservative Union as “unacceptable” and “wrong as wrong can be,” CPAC has invited at least 20 convention speakers who fanned the flames of the insurrection with their dangerous rhetoric and actions, including twice-impeached former President Trump and senators who voted against certifying the 2020 election results.
“CPAC officials claim they condemn the Capitol riot, but their eagerness to give a megaphone to a who’s who of right-wing politicians and movement leaders that incited the violence and insurrection we saw that day shows they are 100% complicit,” said Kyle Herrig, president of government watchdog Accountable.US. “Forget guilt by association, this is a blatant celebration of the guilty. They’ve made clear there is no daylight between the mainstream conservative movement and all the groups, politicians, and corporations that egg on would-be seditionists.”
The report was the latest analysis from Accountable.US’ ‘Subsidizing Sedition’ project, which aims to make crystal clear to the public that the January 6th Capitol riot wasn’t a spontaneous event by fringe right-wing extremists, but rather a well-coordinated attack on our democracy supported and promoted by mainstream corporations, GOP and conservative politicians, operatives, groups and funders. The project comes as Speaker Pelosi plans a 9-11-style commission on what led the deadly events of January 6th.
AMONG CPAC’S INVITED SPEAKERS:
- Senators Ted Cruz, Josh Hawley and Cynthia Lummis, who were one of the few senators who voted against certifying the 2020 election results.Rep. Jim Jordan, who led the charge to block certification of the 2020 election results; President Trump praised Rep. Jordan’s speech at the January 6, 2021 “Stop The Steal Rally,” which led to the insurrection at the Capitol.
- Rep. Matt Gaetz, who pushed conspiracies of election fraud in the weeks leading up the Capitol riots; In December 2020, Rep. Gaetz declared that people “better fight like hell” against the alleged stolen election.
- Rep. Jim Banks, who tweeted that he was “looking forward to welcoming thousands on Capitol Hill” for January 6, 2021 rallies, leading Banks to face accusations of inciting violence.
- Rep. Jodey Arrington, who signed onto a letter accusing Attorney General Bill Barr of a “shocking lack of action” after Barr announced that the DOJ has found no evidence of widespread voter fraud.
- Reps. Mo Brooks and Paul Gosar, who in conjunction with right-wing activist Ali Alexander schemed to put “maximum pressure” on Congress to vote against certifying election results.
- Rep. Madison Cawthorn, who at a Turning Point USA event just weeks before the Capitol insurrection told attendees to “lightly threaten” members who opposed allegations of voter fraud in the 2020 election. On the day of the Capitol insurrection, Cawthorn spoke at the Stop The Steal rally, saying the crowd has “some fight in it.”
- Rep. Steve Scalise, the House GOP Whip, pressured GOP members to object to the certification of the 2020 presidential election results
- Charlie Kirk, Founder of Turning Point USA. Turning Point Action, the political arm of Kirk’s Turning Point USA, was listed as an official organizer of the rallies that led to the Capitol insurrection. Kirk promoted Turning Point USA’s decision to send 80 busses full of Stop The Steal activists to Washington, DC.
- Ian Smith, New Jersey gym owner and speaker at the “Stop The Steal” Rally. Leading up to his speech at a DC Stop The Steal rally on January 5, 2021, Smith tweeted in support of President Trump’s objections to the election results, saying “Mr. President. You called. The cavalry is coming” and “#makepoliticiansafraidagain”. During his speech on January 5, 2021 in Freedom Plaza, Smith proclaimed, “here we are in Washington, DC bringing the storm. Thank you so much and I will see you tomorrow at Capitol Hill.”
- Dan Bongino, partial owner of Parler and election fraud conspiracy theorist. Bongino wrote “dozes of Facebook post” and posted “hours of podcast programming” claiming there were irregularities in the 2020 election results, leading the New York Times to deem Bongino the largest “superspreader” of election misinformation.