The 10 Most Ridiculous CPAC Events
The Conservative Political Action Conference is taking place this week at the Gaylord National Resort and Convention Center in National Harbor, Maryland. CPAC is the year’s most biggest gathering of conservative thought leaders, serving as a kind of Coachella for misinformation, bigotry, religious zealotry, and veneration of a twice-impeached president who lost the 2020 election. The 2023 edition will feature speeches from likes of Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene, former Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro, Donald Trump, and others, although big names like Ron DeSantis, Mike Pence, and House Speaker Kevin McCarthy are skipping the conference, creating questions about its relevance.
Not helping matters is that CPAC’s chairman, Matt Schalpp, has been accused of groping a male Herschel Walker staffer’s crotch. Nevertheless, Schlapp has been front-and-center all week, hosting a panel of his own and presiding over a slate of events with titles that seems like they were spit out by A.I. Here’s a selection of some of the most ridiculous ones on the schedule:
THE CHAIRMAN WILL SERVE YOU NOW
Starring: Matt Schlapp, CPAC Chairman; Jim Jordan, Chairman of the House Judiciary Committee
Maybe not the best choice of words considering the chairman in question was recently accused of groping a dude’s crotch.
PARENTS WITH PITCHFORKS
Starring: Mercedes Schlapp, Co-Host CPAC Now; Ian Prior, Senior Adviser at America First Legal; Winsome Sears, Virginia Lieutenant Governor
The false idea that public schools are indoctrinating students to hate America might be the biggest plank of the right’s culture war. “When they started going after our babies, that was the biggest mistake they ever made,” failed Arizona gubernatorial candidate Kari Lake said recently in a typical appeal. “The most dangerous place in nature is between a mama bear and her cub and the Left is right there and we’re gonna rip them to shreds.”
Driving this fervor is another false idea: that Attorney General Merrick Garland directed the Justice Department to criminalize parents who voice concerns with school boards and school administrators. Garland explained what actually happened during a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing earlier this week, explaining to a confused Sen. John Kennedy (R-La.) that the directive only pertained to “violence and threats of violence” and made a special point to highlight that “vigorous public debate” is protected speech.
No one is denying that conservative parents have a constitutional right to be upset that schools are teaching kids the truth about America’s history with racism, but yes, it will be a problem if they do, literally, pick up pitchforks.
NO DOMINUS VOBISCUM FBI
Starring: Katie Pavlich, Townhall Editor, Fox News Contributor; Kat Cammack, Congresswoman; Harriet Hageman, Congresswoman
“No dominus vobiscum” is Latin for the “the Lord is not with you.” Why didn’t CPAC just say that in English? Probably because conservatives seem to think invoking Latin lends a biblical sense of gravitas to whatever they’re saying. Also see: Elon Musk writing “Vox Populi, Vox Dei” — the voice of the people is the voice of God — to justify using Twitter polls to make major policy decisions. It’s only applied when convenient, however. Musk is still around despite Twitter users agreeing in December that he should step down as CEO.
DON LEMON IS PAST HIS PRIMETIME
Starring: Larry O’Connor, The Host of O’Connor & Company and O’Connor Tonight; Kurt Schlichter, Senior Columnist at Townhall; L. Brent Bozell III, Founder and President of Media Research Center; Chaya Raichik, Creator of Libs of TikTok
A four-person panel to discuss a CNN morning show anchor who is pretty universally recognized as a jackass? Sure.
NO CHINESE BALLOON ABOVE TENNESSEE
Starring: Sara Carter, Host of the Sara Carter Show; Marsha Blackburn, U.S. Senator
THE BIDEN CRIME FAMILY
Starring: Bob Beauprez, Fmr. Congressman and CPAC Board Member; James Comer, Chairman House Oversight Committee, Congressman; Mollie Hemingway, Editor in Chief of the Federalist
House Oversight Committee Chairman James Comer speaking on a panel titled “The Biden Crime Family” tells you all you need to know about the seriousness of the congressional investigation into Biden’s family that Comer is currently leading.
OPEN BORDERS KILL
Starring: Sara Carter, Host, Sara Carter Show; Sean Reyes, Utah Attorney General; Rosi Orozco, Fmr. Deputy Legislature of the Mexican Congress; Brandon Judd, Border Patrol Union President
Short of Mexico detaching itself from America and floating to the other side of the world, there’s nothing that will stop conservatives from attacking Democrats over the situation at the border. It’s an intractable issue that has spanned administrations — but, to them, President Biden is solely to blame.
Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene blamed him earlier this week for the fentanyl deaths of two young men. “Listen to this mother, who lost two children to fentanyl poisoning, tell the truth about both of her son’s murders because of the Biden administrations refusal to secure our border and stop the Cartel’s from murdering Americans everyday by Chinese fentanyl,” she tweeted.
The only problem is that the two men died while Trump was in office in 2020.
FINISH THE WALL, BUILD THE DOME
Starring: Eric Bolling, Host of Eric Bolling The Balance; Stephen Miller, America First Legal; Wesley Hunt, Congressman; Dave Yost, Ohio Attorney General
Speaking of closing off America from the rest of the world, here’s a panel about not only finishing the border wall, but “building a dome” — ostensibly a reference to comments Trump made in January about building “an impenetrable dome” to protect America from nuclear attacks. One would like to think Trump was speaking metaphorically, but it’s hard to be sure considering he reportedly wanted to nuke hurricanes and wondered if China was shooting America with a “hurricane gun.”
A RABBI, A CHRISTIAN, AND A CARDINAL WALK INTO A BAR
Starring: Elaine Beck, Host of “It’s Not About Us”; Jack Brewer; Deal Hudson, Host of the “Church and Culture” Radio Show; Rav. Shlomo Chayen
No, thank you.
Starring: Mike Lindell, CEO of MyPillow
The title of every event that’s an address from a single individual is simply “Speech,” except for MyPillow CEO Mike Lindell, whose time slot is titled “MySpeech.” It’s not a bad bit, actually.