CPAC rescinds invitation to Milo Yiannopoulos after audio surfaces with controversial pedophilia remarks
The Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) rescinded its invitation to Milo Yiannopoulos on Monday, just 48 hours after announcing him as the conference's keynote speaker.
The announcement came a day after audio from a podcast resurfaced in which Yiannopoulos did not condemn relationships between boys and men and recalled his own experience with sexual assault.
Images of Milo Yiannopoulos
"Due to the revelation of an offensive video int he past 24 hours condoning pedophilia, the American Conservative Union has decided to rescind the invitation of Milo Yiannopoulos to speak at the Conservative Political Action Conference," American Conservative Union (ACU) Chairman Matt Schlapp said in a statement.
Yiannopoulos currently serves as an editor at Breitbart News, however recent reports suggest his tenure there may be in jeopardy. According to FOX Business Network reporter Charles Gasparino, the conservative media outlet is considering his "dismissal."
Yiannopoulos took to Facebook on Sunday to defend himself against what he is calling a "co-ordinated effort to discredit" him.
"I do not support pedophilia. Period," Yiannopoulos wrote. "It is a vile and disgusting crime, perhaps the very worst. There are selectively edited videos doing the rounds, as part of a co-ordinated effort to discredit me from establishment Republicans, that suggest I am soft on the subject."
CPAC organizers acknowledged the initial Facebook response, but deemed it "insufficient."
"It is up to him to answer the tough questions and we urge him to immediately further address these disturbing comments," Schlapp's statement read.
In a second response posted to Facebook on Monday, Yiannopoulos apologized further and noted that he once suffered child abuse.
"I would like to restate my utter disgust at adults who sexually abuse minors. I am horrified by pedophilia and I have devoted large portions of my career as a journalist to exposing child abusers," he said.
He also added:
I do not advocate for illegal behavior. I explicitly say on the tapes that I think the current age of consent is "about right."
I do not believe sex with 13-year-olds is okay. When I mentioned the number 13, I was talking about the age I lost my own virginity.
I shouldn't have used the word "boy" -- which gay men often do to describe young men of consenting age -- instead of "young man." That was an error.
I am certainly guilty of imprecise language, which I regret.
Read the full statement below: