UPDATE (11/13/18): Since the publication of this article, the American Priority conference event page has been modified. The QAnon “expert” panel mentioned in this article has been delisted and some listed speakers who frequently spread the conspiracy theory are no longer listed as conference speakers. Fox News contributor Pete Hegseth no longer appears in the lineup; American Priority conference’s Alex Phillips tells Right Wing Watch that Hegseth withdrew due to an unexpected family obligation.
Heritage Foundation Distinguished Visiting Fellow Stephen Moore and Fox News contributor Pete Hegseth are scheduled to appear at a conference in Washington, D.C., next month where a panel of believers in the “QAnon” conspiracy theory plan to present. Moore served as an economic adviser to President Donald Trump during the 2016 presidential campaign.
The conference was announced earlier this year as an alternative to the Conservative Political Action Conference, which Ali Alexander (also known as “Ali Akbar”), one of the original American Priority conference organizers, said neglected the Trump base, despite a CPAC speaker roster that has included administration officials (including the president himself).
Fox News and Heritage Foundation have not answered Right Wing Watch’s requests for comment.
The current agenda page for the American Priority Conference lists as one of its “conference topics” the “QAnon” conspiracy theory, which surmises that President Donald Trump has ordered someone (or a group of people) with top-level federal security clearance to gradually reveal a secret collaboration between Trump and Special Counsel Robert Mueller to take down a satanic pedophile ring said to span the globe, and allegedly involves top Democratic leaders. Believers of the conspiracy theory, which revolves around an anonymous figure known only as “Q,” who shares via cryptic riddles posted to an image board notorious for child pornography, believe that Trump will eventually subject such top Democrats as Hillary Clinton to military tribunals.
The American Priority event promises “an open panel discussion from Q Experts.” The website does not contain any additional information about the planned panel. Speakers listed on the conference lineup include YouTube personality Jordan Sather, a prominent producer of QAnon content on YouTube.
Sather, who was interviewed on Comedy Central as a QAnon conspiracy theorist, uploads content perpetuating the conspiracy theory almost every single day online, where he has nearly 160,000 subscribers on YouTube. Just this morning, Sather posted an image to Twitter suggesting that news that Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsberg had been hospitalized with fractured ribs was part of the QAnon conspiracy theory.
— Jordan Sather (@Jordan_Sather_) November 8, 2018
Dustin Nemos, another QAnon content producer, is also slated to speak at the conference. Another speaker is Kari Baxter Donovan, who once promoted an apparently Q-themed article at Populist Media, which appears to have been deleted, tweeting its link with the tagline, “Q is for everyone” and the hashtag “#QAnon” hashtag, which she has also used to promote content as recently as November 3. (Update, 11/29/18: Donovan tells us she is no longer planning to attend American Priority Conference after deciding that organizer Alex Phillips “isn’t the quality of person I want to be associated with.”)
Another speaker slated for the conference is Marjorie Taylor Greene, who posted about QAnon on Facebook as recently as November 5. DeAnna Lorraine, who is also appearing at the conference, has tweeted about QAnon, too.
The event also features breakout sessions with other pro-Trump conspiracy theorists including Matt Couch, who’s responsible for spreading lies about the murder of former DNC staffer Seth Rich, and Laura Loomer.
The conference is also scheduled to feature presenters known to have had friendly interactions with figures within the white supremacist “alt-right” movement, including R.C. Maxwell, Jack Posobiec, and Milo Yiannopoulous.
Deputy Director of the anti-immigrant group NumbersUSA Chris Chmielenski is also slated to speak at the American Priority conference.
Right now, the conference shows only two full sponsors: An entity called American Grassroots Council, Inc., which appears to have only a shell website, and Americans For The Trump Agenda, a project of the United States Public Policy Council, Inc., a 501(c)(4) nonprofit whose principal officer is listed as Emy Delgaudio, an Amway distributor. (Amway is the pyramid-style company founded by Richard DeVos, the late father-in-law of current Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos.)
This article has been updated for clarity, with a link added to comments by a conference organizer, Ali Alexander, regarding the need for a conference alternative to CPAC. Alex Phillips, who told Right Wing Watch that he is now the “sole owner and organizer” of the American Priority conference, said that Alexander left the project in August.