Trump supporter Matt Schlapp avoids questions on groping allegations as CPAC kicks off

Trump supporter and head of the Conservative Action Political Conference Matt Schlapp avoided questions from The Independent about allegations that he groped a Republican campaign staffer, as the GOP confab got underway on Thursday.

Mr Schlapp has been the chairman of the American Conservative Union, which organises CPAC. He faces alegations that he groped a staffer while campaigning for former Republican Senate nominee Herschel Walker in Georgia. A staffer for Mr Walker told The Daily Beast that Mr Schlapp “groped” and “fondled” his crotch. Mr Schlapp has vehemently denied the allegations.

The unnamed accuser later filed a lawsuit against Mr Schlapp and his wife Mercedes in Virginia Circuit Court for the City of Alexandria.

The lawsuit alleges that Mr Schlapp “placed his hand” on the anonymous staffer’s leg and “began aggressively fondling [his] genital area in a sustained fashion” as he was being driven to a hotel after visiting a Georgia bar.” The staffer also filed a lawsuit against longtime Republican fundraiser Caroline Wren, alleging that she defamed him when Ms Wren made derogatory comments about the staffer in defence of Mr Schlapp.

Mr Schlapp has been an supporter of former president Donald Trump and his wife Mercedes worked in the Trump White House. In an interview with The Washington Examiner, Mr Schlapp charactetrised the allegations as a plot against him.

“Fake journalists are pushing this leftist agenda and lying, and I'm a victim of that, right? This media will take any charge and run with it if they can destroy a Republican or a Trump supporter or conservative. That’s what we have in this country,” he said.

The Independent caught Mr Schlapp after he spoke on Real America’s Voice with reporter Ed Henry, who lost his job with Fox News after a former producer accused him of sexual misconduct, which Mr Henry has denied.

But when asked about the allegations, Mr Schlapp did not respond to questions and was escorted away from the press. One conservative activist said “you need to drop it, it’s false. It’s fake news.”