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A new report from CNN alleges that New York Jets quarterback Aaron Rodgers has expressed support for bizarre conspiracy theories about the 2012 Sandy Hook school shooting.

Journalists Jake Tapper and Pamela Brown reported this week that in “private conversations,” Rodgers shared his belief that the shooting — which claimed the lives of 26 people, many of them young children — was a hoax.

The conspiracy theory has gained popularity among far-rightwing extremists in recent years, thanks largely to its endorsement by political commentator Alex Jones.

Rodgers has been receiving a good deal of attention in political circles this week thanks to reports that presidential candidate Robert F. Kennedy Jr. is considering the QB as his running mate.

Aaron Rodgers of the Green Bay Packers looks on during the first half against the Miami Dolphins at Hard Rock Stadium on December 17, 2023 in Miami Gardens, Florida.
Aaron Rodgers of the Green Bay Packers looks on during the first half against the Miami Dolphins at Hard Rock Stadium on December 17, 2023 in Miami Gardens, Florida. (Photo by Rich Storry/Getty Images)

Aaron Rodgers Alleges Sandy Hook Was a Hoax

According to CNN‘s report, “In private conversations [Rodgers has] shared deranged conspiracy theories about the 2012 Sandy Hook school shooting not being real.”

One such conversation allegedly occurred when Rodgers was introduced to Brown at the Kentucky Derby in 2013.

“Hearing that she was a journalist with CNN, Rodgers immediately began attacking the news media for covering up important stories,” the report reads.

Aaron Rodgers #8 of the New York Jets looks on prior to a game against the Miami Dolphins at Hard Rock Stadium on December 17, 2023 in Miami Gardens, Florida.
Aaron Rodgers #8 of the New York Jets looks on prior to a game against the Miami Dolphins at Hard Rock Stadium on December 17, 2023 in Miami Gardens, Florida. (Photo by Megan Briggs/Getty Images)

“Rodgers brought up the tragic killing of 20 children and 6 adults by a gunman at Sandy Hook Elementary School, claiming it was actually a government inside job and the media was intentionally ignoring it.”

In a second conversation with an anonymous source, Rodgers allegedly said:

“Sandy Hook never happened … All those children never existed. [The parents] were all actors. They’re all making it up. They’re all actors.”

“Rodgers went on to delve into some of the darker caverns of the false conspiracy theory,” the report continues, adding, “This person found the encounter disturbing.”

Aaron Rodgers #8 of the New York Jets looks on from the sideline prior to the game against the Miami Dolphins at MetLife Stadium on November 24, 2023 in East Rutherford, New Jersey.
Aaron Rodgers #8 of the New York Jets looks on from the sideline prior to the game against the Miami Dolphins at MetLife Stadium on November 24, 2023 in East Rutherford, New Jersey. (Photo by Rich Schultz/Getty Images)

Aaron Rodgers’ Long History of Controversial Comments

The 40-year-old football star’s political beliefs have been a frequent source of controversy in recent years.

Former NFL quarterback DeShone Kizer indicated in an interview that Rodgers was a 9/11 truther.

Before that, Rodgers declined to take the COVID-19 vaccine during the pandemic and was accused of making misleading statements to the press in order to create the false impression that he’d gotten the shot.

Aaron Rodgers #8 of the New York Jets looks on prior to playing the Cleveland Browns at Cleveland Browns Stadium on December 28, 2023 in Cleveland, Ohio.
Aaron Rodgers #8 of the New York Jets looks on prior to playing the Cleveland Browns at Cleveland Browns Stadium on December 28, 2023 in Cleveland, Ohio. (Photo by Nick Cammett/Getty Images)

Rodgers has also been highly critical of Joe Biden, alleging that the president and all who voted for him are dangerously ignorant.

More recently, Rodgers went on the attack against Jimmy Kimmel, alleging that the late-night host was a frequented visitor of the private island owned by deceased sex criminal Jeffrey Epstein.

However, there is no real reason to believe that Kimmel ever met Epstein, much less visited his island, and the comic angrily responded to Rodgers’ claims on his ABC talk show.

Aaron Rodgers #8 of the New York Jets looks on prior to playing the Cleveland Browns at Cleveland Browns Stadium on December 28, 2023 in Cleveland, Ohio.
Aaron Rodgers #8 of the New York Jets looks on prior to playing the Cleveland Browns at Cleveland Browns Stadium on December 28, 2023 in Cleveland, Ohio. (Photo by Nick Cammett/Getty Images)

Rodgers has yet to publicly respond to the report of his Sandy Hook claims.

And there’s no word from the Kennedy campaign with regard to whether the candidate is still considering Rodgers as a possible running mate.

As many have pointed out, if Rodgers enters the political arena, he’ll be facing a much more aggressive media than he’s dealt with throughout his playing career.

And this preview of the scrutiny he’ll face might convince the QB to stick to football.

UPDATE: Rodgers has now taken to X (formerly Twitter) to tell his side of the story with the statement below:

Aaron Rodgers of the NFL New York Jets looks on during the first round of the AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am at Spyglass Hill Golf Course on February 01, 2024 in Pebble Beach, California.
Aaron Rodgers of the NFL New York Jets looks on during the first round of the AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am at Spyglass Hill Golf Course on February 01, 2024 in Pebble Beach, California. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)

“As I’m on the record saying in the past, what happened in Sandy Hook was an absolute tragedy. I am not and have never been of the opinion that the events did not take place.

“Again, I hope that we learn from this and other tragedies to identify the signs that will allow us to prevent unnecessary loss of life.

“My thoughts and prayers continue to remain with the families affected along with the entire Sandy Hook community.”

We’ll have further updates on this developing story as new information becomes available.