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Members of Secretive US Conservative Group Identified

October 26th, 2021 12:47

UK media has report­ed on a leaked doc­u­ment that iden­ti­fies the mem­ber­ship of the  Coun­cil for Nation­al Pol­i­cy (CNP), described as a secre­tive group that pro­vides oppor­tu­ni­ties for top US Repub­li­cans and oth­er con­ser­v­a­tives to mix with a wide vari­ety of anti-abor­tion and anti-Islam­ic extrem­ists. Accord­ing to The Guardian report:

A leaked doc­u­ment has revealed the mem­ber­ship list of the secre­tive Coun­cil for Nation­al Pol­i­cy (CNP), show­ing how it pro­vides oppor­tu­ni­ties for elite Repub­li­cans, wealthy entre­pre­neurs, media pro­pri­etors and pil­lars of the US con­ser­v­a­tive move­ment to rub shoul­ders with anti-abor­tion and anti-Islam­ic extrem­ists. In deep red West Vir­ginia, Biden’s $3. 5tn spend­ing pro­pos­al is immense­ly pop­u­lar Read more The South­ern Pover­ty Law Cen­ter (SPLC), which mon­i­tors rightwing hate groups, describes the CNP as “a shad­owy and intense­ly secre­tive group [which] has oper­at­ed behind the scenes” in its efforts to “build the con­ser­v­a­tive move­ment”. The leaked mem­ber­ship list dates from Sep­tem­ber last year, and reveals the 40-year-old CNP put influ­en­tial Trump admin­is­tra­tion fig­ures along­side lead­ers of orga­ni­za­tions that have been cat­e­go­rized as hate groups. Adver­tise­ment The group was found­ed in 1981 by activists influ­en­tial in the Chris­t­ian right, includ­ing Tim LaHaye, Howard Phillips and Paul Weyrich, who had also been involved in found­ing and lead­ing the Moral Major­i­ty. Ini­tial­ly they were seek­ing to max­i­mize their influ­ence on the new Rea­gan admin­is­tra­tion. In sub­se­quent years, CNP meet­ings have played host to pres­i­den­tial aspi­rants like George W Bush in 1999 and Mitt Rom­ney in 2007, and sit­ting pres­i­dents includ­ing Don­ald Trump in 2020. In videos obtained by the Wash­ing­ton Post in 2020, the CNP exec­u­tive com­mit­tee chair­man, Bill Wal­ton, told atten­dees of the upcom­ing elec­tion: “This is a spir­i­tu­al bat­tle we are in. This is good ver­sus evil.”The CNP is so secre­tive, accord­ing to reports, that its mem­bers are instruct­ed not to reveal their affil­i­a­tion or even name the group. Hei­di Beirich, of the Glob­al Project Against Hate and Extrem­ism, said in an email that “this new CNP list makes clear that the group still serves as a key venue where main­stream con­ser­v­a­tives and extrem­ists mix”, adding that CNP “clear­ly remains a crit­i­cal nexus for main­stream­ing extrem­ism from the far right into con­ser­v­a­tive cir­cles”. The doc­u­ment – which reveals email address­es and phone num­bers for most mem­bers – shows that the CNP includes mem­bers of SPLC-list­ed hate groups.

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The Glob­al Influ­ence Oper­a­tions Report (GIOR) first report­ed on the CNP in June 2021 when we fea­tured a South­ern Pover­ty Law Cen­ter report on the group. As we not­ed in our report, our pre­de­ces­sor pub­li­ca­tion cov­ered a close asso­ciate of anti-Mus­lim fig­ure Frank Gaffney, one of the CNP mem­bers iden­ti­fied in the Guardian.