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Daily Caller retracts story about CPAC attendance being low

The conservative news agency said the article "could not support its central thesis beyond anecdotal evidence."

Published: February 26, 2024 8:58am

The Daily Caller News Foundation retracted its story claiming that the 2024 Conservative Political Action Conference suffered from low attendance. 

The conservative news agency said in a retraction notice Sunday that the article "could not support its central thesis beyond anecdotal evidence," and that editors "determined this piece did not meet editorial standards."

CPAC organizers said that tickets for the event in National Harbor, Maryland, had sold out and American Conservative Union Chairman Matt Schlapp, the conference's organizer, said ticket sales were "easily double" what they were in 2023. 

"In light of this, the piece has been retracted. We regret the error," the Daily Caller also said. 

The original article, which is still available via an archived link, suggests that heavy support for former President Donald Trump may be the reason behind the perceived turnout.

"This year, with a slate of speakers uniformly supportive of Trump, many of the conference’s sessions had vacant seats, with attendees and commentators suggesting that the uniformity in support of Trump was the reason," the original article stated.  

The article featured a picture of dozens of empty seats in the back of the auditorium during Argentinian President Javier Milei's address at CPAC.

CPAC responded to the retraction on X, formerly Twitter. 

"While we were disappointed this story was published at all, we appreciate the @DailyCaller’s retraction and commitment to honest journalism. We can only hope that all media outlets can make that same commitment," CPAC wrote

Follow Madeleine Hubbard on X or Instagram.