TheBlazeTV’s S.E. Cupp said Friday on MSNBC that she wasn’t “pressured” by the left-leaning network to boycott the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC), the largest annual gathering of conservatives.
“There’s been this idea that somehow this network pressured me out of speaking at CPAC. Not even possible. Didn’t happen,” she said on MSNBC. “I also work for Glenn Beck who, I don’t know if it gets more conservative than Glenn. My employers on either side were not a factor in this. This was my decision.”
Cupp announced Tuesday that she wouldn’t be attending CPAC due to organizers of the event barring gay Republican groups from sponsoring it. She commented further on the decision, saying “it’s just become increasingly uncomfortable … to endorse an event that is in some ways excluding and in many ways marginalizing” gay Republicans.
“These are people who have worked doubly hard on our behalf, having to reconcile their private lives with their political lives,” she said. “They’ve risked much more than we have in fighting to advance conservative policies.”
Cupp, also a co-host of MSNBC’s The Cycle, went on to say that gay Republicans should be “rewarded with positions of prominence” within the party. “We can’t keep doing these purity tests that try to exclude hardworking conservatives who are begging to be let in, who are begging to be on our side,” she said.
Cupp was specifically referring to CPAC’s decision to exclude two gay Republican groups, GOProud and Log Cabin Republicans, as sponsors of CPAC. Both groups have served as sponsors in the past but were told they could not participate the event last year
Jimmy LaSalvia, co-founder of GOProud, told media news site FishbowlDC he will not attend CPAC if his group cannot sponsor the event. But he also said that “boycotts are stupid.”
Asked about Cupp’s decision to boycott the event, he told TheBlaze he is “very grateful for SE’s support of GOProud.”
This isn’t the first time CPAC organizers have made news ahead of their event next month. Al Cardenas, president of the American Conservative Union which produces CPAC, said this week New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie (R) was not invited to speak because he “made it very hard for Republicans in the Congress at a time when we were trying to deal with fiscal restraint.”
We’ve requested comment from CPAC organizers.