Conservative Filmmaker’s Attempt To Prove Voter Fraud In Colorado Blows Up In His Face

Conservative Filmmaker’s Attempt To Prove Voter Fraud In Colorado Blows Up In His Face

james o'keefe coloradoedited

Conservative activist and professional troublemaker James O’Keefe released another one of his ‘blockbuster’ stings Wednesday that supposedly showed voter fraud in action in Colorado. The convicted criminal took his cameras to Colorado earlier this month in an attempt to expose Democrats taking part in voter fraud to assist Democratic candidates in the close races for Senate and Governor. While in O’Keefe’s mind, and surely hard-core right-wingers’, he completely exposed voter fraud in action, the reality of the situation is he didn’t document one actual instance of voter fraud being committed.

In typical O’Keefe fashion, the self-proclaimed muckraker donned disguises and pretended to be a liberal activist while speaking with volunteers at liberal non-profit organizations who were working on voter registration and mobilization drives. In a few instances that he caught on video, he was able to convince some of these other activists that utilizing unused mailed ballots to vote for Democrats was a good idea. Colorado is one of three states that has an all mail-in voting system. O’Keefe presented various scenarios to the activists in the video where he’d be able to get a hold of unused ballots. He was able to get some of them to agree that it was a good idea.

Below is O’Keefe’s video that was released Wednesday:

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In the end, this is really just a bunch of nothing. All O’Keefe was able to do was present strawman scenarios to a few people and get them to agree that they could potentially work. In the video, we see him state that he has a bunch of fraternity brothers that have moved out but they will receive their ballots because they didn’t change their addresses. He also pushed forward the idea of rummaging in the trash in historically low-turnout areas to find thrown out ballots to use and turn in. Overall, he ran with the long-held conservative belief that widespread voter fraud is unbelievably easy, especially with mailed ballots. In this case, he was able to videotape a few people agreeing with his stupid plans, though he didn’t film anyone taking part in anything illegal.

On Monday, Mother Jones ran a preemptive article which hamstrung O’Keefe’s upcoming ‘bombshell.’ In the piece, it was revealed that a number of Democratic staffers caught O’Keefe trying to catch them in a sting when he suggested running a voter fraud scheme to them. O’Keefe and his assistants ran the same scheme that you see in the video, bringing up ballots found in the trash or for college students who have moved off campus. However, O’Keefe and his helpers were turned away from the offices. O’Keefe was also caught trying to disguise himself and go back to the same office. O’Keefe was also turned away from a non-profit organization after he tried to prove that the organization was directly collaborating with Sen. Mark Udall’s campaign.

The repeated questions about submitting other people’s ballots led Democratic staffers to suspect they were being targeted. Later, the staffers viewed photos of O’Keefe—including one taken in Colorado showing O’Keefe sans mustache and sporting a Udall campaign sticker and a Women for Udall button—and they concluded that O’Keefe and the college professor were the same person. They also said the image O’Keefe tweeted of himself with a mustache matched the man who visited the Boulder office on Friday.

O’Keefe and two male colleagues also targeted a progressive nonprofit named New Era Colorado, according to New Era executive director Steve Fenberg. On Saturday, Fenberg says, O’Keefe and his friends contacted New Era’s Fort Collins office to set up an in-person meeting and identified themselves as activists affiliated with Rocky Mountain Vote Pride. The three men arrived carrying Udall campaign literature, Fenberg notes, but a New Era organizer met them outside the office’s front door and refused to let them enter with the Udall materials. Outside groups such as New Era cannot coordinate with political campaigns, and Fenberg says he believes O’Keefe and his collaborators “were trying to establish evidence we were working together.”

When New Era’s staffers began taking pictures of O’Keefe (including the photo embedded at left), Fenberg says, O’Keefe and a colleague went to their car and returned with a large video camera and a microphone. “If you want to take photos of us, we’ll take photos of you,” O’Keefe said, according to Fenberg, and the New Era staffers closed the door while O’Keefe and his friend tried to push it open and stick their microphone inside. Fenberg says New Era filed a police report about the incident.

Mother Jones Editor David Corn needled O’Keefe on Monday when the MJ piece ran and again on Wednesday when O’Keefe’s video was published. O’Keefe had originally responded to Corn on Monday and claimed that Corn would end up with “egg all over [his] undercover-Polk-award winning face” after the video was released. On Wednesday, Corn was relentless with the Twitter attack on O’Keefe.



Game. Set. Match. I guess we should give him a little credit. At least this time, he didn’t don an Osama Bin Laden mask while attempting to prove Islamic terrorists were crossing the Rio Grande and infiltrating America.

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