Undercover journalist James O’Keefe’s organization, Project Veritas, released a video showing senior staffers from Hillary Clinton’s campaign indirectly accepting a contribution from a woman who identified herself as a Canadian citizen.
At Hillary Clinton’s campaign launch event in New York, undercover video footage shows a woman, who claimed to be Canadian, attempt to donate to the campaign in exchange for a t-shirt. Initially, senior campaign officials manning the booth—Mollie Barker, the director of marketing, and Erin Tibe, the campaign compliance manager—told her that it was illegal to accept contributions from foreign nationals.
The woman, who self-identified as Canadian, then asked if an American standing in line behind her, who was an undercover reporter for the Veritas Project, could make the contribution on her behalf. Barker agreed, and watched the self-identified Canadian woman hand money to the American woman, who then made a donation in exchange for a t-shirt.
The Project Veritas reporter asked: “So Canadians can’t buy them, but Americans can buy it for them?”
Barker responded: “Not technically, you would just be making the donation.”
The Big Reveal
At a press event in the National Press Building where the video was unveiled, about 40 reporters from outlets including the Daily Beast, Fox News, The New York Times, and Politico attended. After the video was finished, O’Keefe took questions from the crowd of reporters. Several reporters asked questions highlighting the small-time nature of the offense.
O’Keefe noted that the Clinton campaign and other media outlets, including Time magazine, which broke the news that Project Veritas reporters were infiltrating Clinton’s campaign, all took the footage seriously.
While the identity of the Canadian woman has yet to be confirmed, O’Keefe explained that whether she was actually a foreign national wouldn’t matter, because the Clinton campaign believed she was not American and took her money anyways. O’Keefe admitted that his undercover reporter participated in illegal activity by assisting the Canadian woman in breaking the law, but stated that the violation was the equivalent of jaywalking in the campaign finance world.
A reporter asked if the Clinton campaign’s actions were the equivalent of jaywalking, as well. O’Keefe explained that it’s not about the money, but the willingness to break the law that is worrisome.
While the footage raises questions about the legality of the transaction, holding a large press event for the video seemed to backfire a bit. Several of the reporters were visibly annoyed, and even laughed at some of O’Keefe’s responses. One reporter quipped: “Is this a joke? This feels like a prank.”
O’Keefe explained that while the one contribution in the footage may not be a big deal on its own, it shows a “willingness to break the law” within the Clinton campaign.
More To Come
O’Keefe said more undercover videos were to come, and would be released every few days.
“Is this the best thing you have?” another reporter asked.
When asked if the upcoming videos were more incriminating, O’Keefe refused to offer details, stating only that there are many undercover Project Veritas reporters across the country currently investigating, infiltrating, and exposing other campaigns.
O’Keefe refused to identify the undercover reporter who shot the footage, and compared his activists to Navy Seal Team Six members, explaining that identifying them would jeopardize their mission. Although he declined to offer any names, O’Keefe hinted that the upcoming videos may show incriminating footage from candidates on both sides of the aisle. Republicans and Democrats are both fair game to be investigated for campaign-finance violations, he said.