CPAC “honored” to feature Wayne Dupree, who said Sandy Hook was a “hoax” and a victim’s parents were “crisis actors”

CPAC promotional image for Wayne Dupree

From a January 29 tweet by CPAC. 

One of the featured speakers at the upcoming Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) will be radio host Wayne Dupree, who has claimed that the Sandy Hook school shooting was a “hoax” and that a victim’s parents were “fake” and working as “crisis actors.”

CPAC, which is organized by the American Conservative Union and ACU Chair Matt Schlapp, describes itself as “the largest and most influential gathering of conservatives in the world.” This year’s gathering will take place from February 25-28. Over the years, it has hosted leading right-wing politicians, including former Presidents Donald Trump, George W. Bush, and Ronald Reagan. The conference also features right-wing media personalities.

One of the speakers this year is Dupree, who hosts an eponymous program. He also appeared at CPAC in 2020. CPAC wrote of him late last month: “We're honored to have media pioneer @WayneDupreeShow back this year at #CPAC2021. His dedication to promoting conservatism and constitutional principles is what will keep America moving forward.” 

Trump is a fan of Dupree and hosted him at the White House last year. For his part, Dupree has pushed the lie that the election was stolen from Trump.

Popular Information’s Judd Legum, Vox’s Aaron Rupar, and The Washington Post’s Avi Selk have previously documented that Dupree also has a history of pushing conspiracy theories about the December 14, 2012, shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut. 

  • A few weeks after the deadly mass shooting, Dupree wrote an article falsely claiming that the parents of a Sandy Hook victim were actually “actors” and the shooting was a “hoax.” He wrote: “On and before December 14, 2012, Sandy Hook was infested with espionage operatives. These operatives posed as the incredible, primarily parents.” Dupree called this “a glaring case of falsification by the placement of fake parents within the Sandy Hook region” in order “to solicit an emotional response from the American public. This was for the purposes of gun control and far more.”
  • He wrote another article in which he claimed that Sandy Hook parents were working as “crisis actors” who also play “many other characters,” saying: “Now I dont know if this means that everything is fake but it certainly shows that this is a planned event.” 
  • Promoting that article, Dupree tweeted: “#SandyHook Shooting: Grieving Parents Hoax..Worked for Home Security as Crisis Actors  #sandyhookhoax.” 
  • Days later, he tweeted: “Media wants you to stop asking questions about some of the inconsistencies of Sandy Hook.....DON'T STOP!” 

Dupree also tweeted an image suggesting that the survivors of the 2018 school shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, were acting for the camera. 

Media Matters previously reported that Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA) also pushed conspiracy theories about the Parkland and Sandy Hook shootings, among many other topics. Greene was later removed from her committee assignments, with Republicans overwhelmingly voting against the move.