CPAC slams Hyatt after hotel chain criticizes stage design resembling Nazi symbol: 'Outrageous and slanderous'
The Conservative Political Actional Conference (CPAC) lashed out at Hyatt Hotels on Monday, March 1 after the hospitality company released a statement criticizing organizers of the event for having a stage design that "been compared to a symbol of hate."
Hyatt Hotels earlier slammed CPAC organizers in a statement after hosting the event from Friday, February 26 through Sunday, February 28 in Orlando, Florida. The statement came following social media outrage that the stage design at CPAC was in the shape of Odal rune — an obscure symbol used by ranking Nazi officers.
However, organizers of the event said the comparison was “outrageous and slanderous.” “We have a long-standing commitment to the Jewish community,” Matt Schlapp, chairman of the American Conservative Union (ACU), said. “Cancel culture extremists must address antisemitism within their own ranks. CPAC proudly stands with our Jewish allies, including those speaking from this stage.”
The ACU condemned Hyatt in a public letter for its "malicious" words that "defamed" the group. "Contrary to Hyatt’s own mission statement of inclusivity, your company just attacked its own customer by caving in to the pressures of the politically motivated social media agitators who seek to destroy CPAC, our attendees and speakers from across the country, and the millions of Americans who support our work," ACU's general counsel David Safavian told Hyatt Executive Chairman Thomas Pritzker in the letter. "Hyatt made a decision to issue additional statements late last night after the conference ended that disparaged and defamed us. These statements appear to validate demonstrably false and malicious claims."
Furthermore, the conservative group said it was "shocked" that the hospitality company waited till the end of the conference before releasing statements that were irresponsible, untrue, and contribute to a climate of division and hatred," according to Safavian. In its statements, Hyatt Hotels had also slammed attendees for failing to comply with its "safety policies" including social distancing and wearing masks.
"In keeping with our deep culture of inclusivity, our colleagues worked tirelessly to support this event while enforcing Hyatt’s safety policies," the company said. "At times, these efforts included reminding attendees to wear masks and socially distance, even while colleagues occasionally faced hostility from attendees who did not support our policies," it alleged. "Further, we were extremely disappointed by the disrespect many individuals involved in the event showed to our colleagues, as it is reflective neither of our own commitment to care for members of the Hyatt family nor of how we wish to conduct business."
CPAC attendees were seen in footage from Friday evening jeering at American Conservative Union’s executive director Dan Schneider, and CPAC Deputy Director Carly Patrick after they urged them to adhere to the hotel's COVID-19 policies. “I know this might sound like a little bit of a downer, but we also believe in property rights, and this is a private hotel,” Schneider said. “And we believe in the rule of law, so we need to comply with the laws of this county that we’re in. But a private hotel, just like your house, gets to set its own rules.”
They’re just begging people to wear masks— Molly Jong-Fast🏡 (@MollyJongFast) February 26, 2021
Hyatt's earlier defended its decision to host CPAC despite calls for a boycott. “We take pride in operating a highly inclusive environment and we believe that the facilitation of gatherings is a central element of what we do as a hospitality company,” a spokesperson for the Hyatt Regency Orlando in Florida said on Friday, February 26, the Washington Examiner reported.