James O’Keefe of Project Veritas said that he is preparing to take legal action against Big Tech and the mainstream media a day after being permanently banned from Twitter.
“We’re going to sue CNN, and we’re going to sue Twitter,” the combative 36-year-old conservative activist and guerrilla journalist told the New York Post during a Friday interview at his headquarters in Mamaroneck.
“We’re going to sue a bunch of other people, and we’ll represent other people suing these organizations and represent a people’s defamation defense fund under the country’s libel laws—something that no one’s ever done before,” he said.
‘This is false, this is defamatory, and they will pay. Section 230 may have protected them before, but it will not protect them from me.
He also said that the complaint would be filed Monday.
Twitter said it blocked O’Keefe because he allegedly used multiple fake accounts to raise his following and “artificially amplify or disrupt conversations” on the platform.
The day before, he had just released another humiliating video of CNN technical director Charlie Chester on a Tinder date with an undercover agent sharing his employer’s views on Donald Trump and Matt Gaetz.
In one scene, Chester told his ‘date’ that CNN’s focus was to remove Trump from the presidency. Chester was also recorded, saying that CNN exaggerated the COVID-19 death toll to boost ratings.
Last Thursday, Project Veritas released a video in which Chester admitted that the network is “trying to help” Black Lives Matter. It was evidence of the network’s bias, Project Veritas claimed.
In Project Veritas’s tape, Chester told his fake date: “Look what we did, we got Trump out.”
“I am 100 percent going to say it, and I 100 percent believe that if it wasn’t for CNN, I don’t know that Trump would have got voted out.”
“I came to CNN because I wanted to be a part of that.”
According to his now-deleted LinkedIn profile, Chester—a technical director for the cable network where he has worked since 2018—operates video editing equipment.
He is unlikely to have had editorial input or engaged in the network’s regular editorial calls at CNN. However, Project Veritas claimed that he has unique insights into CNN’s editorial culture, which he will be involved in regularly.
Even though the video clips of Chester only show fragments of his remarks, they provide enough background to show that the general thrust of his remarks was not concocted via editing.
A CNN source told Mediaite that Project Veritas found Chester on the dating app Tinder, where he boasted about his job for this liberal media. A Veritas employee who pretended to be a nurse matched with him and visited him on several occasions.
According to a CNN report, Chester and the woman went on five dates until O’Keefe disrupted their final meeting in a coffee shop.
Project Veritas published a video of Chester outlining an overtly political editorial culture aimed at helping Joe Biden and hurting Trump in the 2020 election.
“The CNN material was the most devastating material in Project Veritas history,” O’Keefe said. “It showed the nucleus, the heart, and soul of what’s wrong with the media. Chester was proud of the fact that fear and propaganda sell. He was bragging about [it].”
“We get thousands of messages from people every day who think the media is corrupt and broken,” O’Keefe said. “But people know if they tell the truth and do the right thing, they’ll be castigated by polite society. Most people don’t want to hurt their families and be defamed.”
Donald Trump Jr. was also among those who criticized Twitter’s decision to suspend O’Keefe’s account after O’Keefe’s organization posted a video of a senior CNN figure discussing how they planned to defame his father.
“In case you haven’t figured out how it works by now… @CNN spreads propaganda to elect Democrats. And then @Twitter runs interference to protect CNN. They’re all on the same team,” he tweeted on April 15.
In a follow-up tweet, he wrote: ‘At this point, both CNN and Twitter should have to register with the FEC as Democrat Super PACs.’
Founded in 2010 by O’Keefe – a Rutgers graduate and former associate of the late conservative journalist Andrew Breitbart – Project Veritas’s mission is “to investigate and expose corruption, dishonesty, self-dealing, waste, fraud and other misconduct,” according to its website. It has previously targeted politicians and organizations such as Planned Parenthood, but it has shifted its attention to the media in recent years.
O’Keefe’s legal action might as well be emboldened by his ongoing legal battle with The New York Times.
Last month, Project Veritas won a significant victory in a defamation case against the Times when a state Supreme Court judge dismissed the paper’s motion to dismiss, allowing O’Keefe to move forward with discovery, potentially exposing the Times and its reporters to uncomfortable scrutiny.
Last November, Project Veritas sued the New York Times, requesting that the paper retract two articles about a Project Veritas video accusing Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-Minn.) of voter fraud. The Project Veritas video was labeled misleading and likely part of a “coordinated misinformation campaign” in two Times posts.
O’Keefe has a lot of experience in the sector.
“I’ve been called a liar over and over,” O’Keefe said. “I’ve been through hell, been incarcerated, had my life upended.”
But this is only the beginning, he said, and his army of undercover reporters and informants is rapidly expanding. He is inspired by how the mass media and tech giant “lying to the people.”
He said he does not care “about keeping my Twitter account or getting a book deal or people liking me.”
“Rush Limbaugh told me that the hardest thing about all of this is to accept being hated—but the moment that you finally stop caring what they think about you is the moment that you’re free.”