Conservative activist: Video shows campaigns encouraging illegal votes

Posted October 30, 2014

Filmmaker James O'Keefe speaks to reporters in Raleigh on Oct. 30, 2014, at the downtown Sheraton.

— Filmmaker and provocateur James O'Keefe's Project Veritas nonprofit has released a video showing what appears to be people working on behalf of various political campaigns in Mecklenburg County encouraging an undercover actor to vote, even though she says she is in the United States illegally. 

The video, O'Keefe said during a news conference in Raleigh Thursday, is the first of at least two he plans to release about North Carolina by early next week. Tuesday is Election Day.

The Mecklenburg video is typical of the filmmaker's oeuvre, in which he goads unsuspecting campaign workers or other individuals into endorsing apparently illegal or unethical activity. 

"Clearly in the video, people are instructing and telling people to vote even though they completely understand they are non-citizens," O'Keefe said.

None of the people in the video are state officials, nor are they candidates themselves. Rather, O'Keefe's video captures people who are handing out literature outside polling places on behalf of candidates, such as the Republican and Democrat running for sheriff, the father of a judicial candidate and those working the polls for legislative candidates. 

O'Keefe's video plays off a potential problem with North Carolina voter rolls. The North Carolina State Board of Elections has confirmed that 109 people under the federal Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program are presently on the voter rolls but have not voted in any prior election. DACA allows some people who arrived illegally in the United States as children to remain in the country. 

There are roughly 6.6 million people registered to vote in North Carolina. 

"We are working to ensure that no ballot cast by a non-citizen will count in this or any future election," state elections director Kim Westbrook Strach said in the news release. 

O'Keefe said his group has been doing similar work in both Wake and Durham counties, but he declined to specify what his next video might show. 

He has been criticized in the past for heavily editing videos that slammed organizations such as National Public Radio and the community organizing group ACORN. He declined to release raw footage of the Project Veritas work in Mecklenburg County, saying his actors were undercover.

"All journalism is selectively edited, especially print journalism," O'Keefe said. "No TV organization I can think of releases their full raw tapes," adding that everything that was said was "in context." 

O'Keefe is known for videos in which he or his associates go undercover and bait their targets into saying things that suggest illegal or unethical activities. He may be best known for appearing to pose as a pimp soliciting advice from ACORN on how to conceal illegal income. Conservative writers and groups have embraced O'Keefe's work, which tends to go viral on social media after being promoted by Republican-leaning websites such as NewsMax and WND.

He is reviled by the political left, and critics point to O'Keefe's missteps. He reportedly paid $100,000 to a former ACORN worker to settle allegations the well-known sting misrepresented him, was fined and put on three years' probation by a federal court for a stunt involving Democratic Louisiana U.S. Sen. Mary Landrieu's office and attempted to lure a CNN reporter with a sexually suggestive prank

Most recently, his group has released videos purporting to show Democratic campaign workers in Colorado condoning illegal voting and staffers for Democratic Kentucky U.S. Senate candidate Alison Lundergan Grimes undercutting her message on coal production in the state.


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  • Rudy Rowell Nov 5, 2014
    user avatar

    Watch the Videos, The people who are telling the "illegal" it is ok to vote are not pole workers they are the campaign supporters outside the polls. the people that would do almost anything to get you to vote for the candidate they support. as far as the video inside the polls that is illegal; but if you go in the polling place and produce the information to vote:
    And sign the paperwork you could vote illegally. In 2016 you must provide an approved form of ID to vote and James O'Keefe was told that when he entered the polling places. I know this because I was told that I would have to prove who I am to vote in 2016. that does not address the "illegal" with her DL that does not indicate she is "illegal" because that would be against her civil liberties to indicate she is "illegal" on her state issued ID.



  • Kenneth Jones Nov 2, 2014
    user avatar

    View quoted thread

    First off, anyone can add to Wikipedia. That is not a source for truthful information. Second, all media is now nothing more than entertainment. Look at the sources for National and International news. It's all Reuters and Associated Press. None of the MSM is truthful anymore. CNN gets caught more than anyone using their green screen pretending to be live at the scene; in a Atlanta studio pretending to be in Saudi Arabia live on the air. Dan Rather lost his job for lying about documents for a former President. Anyone who believes the media has their best interest at heart believes the same of politicians. Most of the population are totally clueless as to what is happening right in front of their faces. We are all being sprayed like roaches and you worry about a Dem or Repub? Ask one about SRM or Geo Engineering. Ask the media. Ask WRAL. They will pretend to know nothing when the opposite is true. Wake up...

  • Mouth For War Oct 31, 2014

    The libs are crazy desperate. They see their failed agenda going down in flames and are trying their best to keep ramming it at you. Everything is a means to an end for them just as long as they keep getting to re-try their same terrible ideas over and over again.

  • beef Oct 31, 2014

    View quoted thread

    Ignorance of the law is no excuse. At least not for conservatives. The charge of felony trespassing was reduced to a misdemeanour, the same as the MM protesters got.

  • beef Oct 31, 2014

    View quoted thread

    Sorry to burst your bubble, but Fred Phelps was a Democrat. He was a local operative in Al Gores 1988 presidential campaign. He was a civil rights attorney and even got an award from the NAACP. He ran for office as a Democrat. Look it up.

  • jurydoc Oct 31, 2014

    Where'd anybody get the idea that those doing the "encouraging" to vote are only Democrats??? Directly from the article, "Rather, O'Keefe's video captures people who are handing out literature outside polling places on behalf of candidates, such as the Republican and Democrat running for sheriff, the father of a judicial candidate and those working the polls for legislative candidates."

    Seems to me, both parties are equally guilty of ignorance among their campaign workers. Note that -- campaign workers --- NOT poll workers.

  • downtowner Oct 31, 2014

    View quoted thread

    It's not the mask of the democratic party. Quit painting all of them with a broad brush. Just like all conservatives aren't like Fred Phelps.

  • miseem Oct 31, 2014

    When O'Keefe starts showing the entire, unedited tapes, I'll consider believing him. It's amazing what can be done to edit video and audio recordings, and I suspect that there have been many splices and deletions in these tapes. And I'm wondering if the real reason the "illegal" voter has her face blocked is because a good lip reader would find that she is not actually saying all of what is in the final, edited recording. And as far as his attempt to make this bi-partisan by mentioning candidates for sheriff from both parties, they both favored Hagan. if the proof is in the pudding, in this situation we have a lot of ingredients, including some mud and other unnamed products, spread across the kitchen with O'Keefe holding the recipe secret and expecting us to believe the final product is really pudding.

  • jackaroe123 Oct 31, 2014

    View quoted thread

    Those 1400 are suspected of being something less than totally legit voters, including people who have moved but not been purged, or deceased, or, yes, registered completely illegally. But they are suspected, not proven, and they include far more than the broad brush you are painting them all with. You're misrepresenting the evidence for your own agenda. It's called "confirmation bias."

  • mokesky Oct 31, 2014

    I love how all the leftists always have something to say about Fox News or Rush. Why? Because they actually show a different point of view then the leftists other networks. SO you are telling me you believe all the other networks besides Fox, Rush, or any other "conservative/Libertarian" points of view? I have said this before liberals are the the "intolerant" people in the world. But they cry for tolerance but once you disagree with them they become the nastiest people I know.