CNN calls cops on Project Veritas founder James O'Keefe for crashing outlet's telephone call
'We’ve been listening to your CNN calls for basically two months and recording everything'
The PR account for CNN announced that it was involving “law enforcement” after the founder of the right-wing group Project Veritas, James O’Keefe, crashed a morning editorial call with CNN President Jeff Zucker. The latter was then threatened that the conservative activist group would release tapes from the network's previously recorded phone calls. “Legal experts say this may be a felony. We’ve referred it to law enforcement,” CNN tweeted on December 1 in response to a video of the call O’Keefe posted on Twitter.
Legal experts say this may be a felony. We‘ve referred it to law enforcement.— CNN Communications (@CNNPR) December 1, 2020
In the video, O’Keefe can be seen unmuting himself on a phone and telling Zucker, “We’ve been listening to your CNN calls for basically two months and recording everything. Just wanted to ask you some questions, if you have a minute. Do you still feel you are the most trusted name in news? Because I have to say from what I’ve been hearing on these phone calls, I don’t know about that. I mean, we’ve got a lot of recordings that indicate you’re not really that independent of a journalist.”
“Thank you for your comments. So everybody, in light of that, I think what we’ll do is we’ll set up a new system and we’ll be back with you, we’ll do the rest of the call a little bit later,” Zucker responded. O'Keefe replied, “We’re going to release those recordings today at 7 o’clock. So stay tuned, it’s going to be fun." Project Veritas has a long and documented history of failed sting operations and of exposing deceptively edited and out of context videos. It has been known to conduct an operation called 'Expose CNN' since 2017 which includes the release of undercover footage and audio that claimed to show left-wing bias at the network.
Some of the latest 'explosive' recordings from the group that O'Keefe promised his followers on December 1 appeared to show that CNN purposely avoided the Hunter Biden controversy that emerged in the final weeks of the 2020 presidential election. It concerned the reports originally published by The New York Post about the emails that allegedly came from President-elect Joe Biden's younger son's laptop that shed light on his questionable foreign business dealings.
BREAKING: @CNN Execs Jeff Zucker, David Chalian, and David Vigilante SPIKE COVERAGE Of @NYPost Hunter Biden Laptop Bombshell— James O'Keefe (@JamesOKeefeIII) December 2, 2020
“OBVIOUSLY we’re not going with the New York Post story on Hunter Biden right now.”
“Perhaps there was a meeting with someone from Burisma…"#CNNTapes pic.twitter.com/Rh334srRz3
"Obviously, we're not going with the New York Post story right now on Hunter Biden," CNN Political Director David Chalian is heard saying during a conference call on October 14, on the day the NY Post released its first reports on Biden's emails. Chalian, who is also CNN's vice president, later insisted the report was "giving its marching orders" to the "rightwing echo chamber about what to talk about today."
"Obviously, Hunter Biden's lawyer is quoted in the New York Post piece and we'll just continue to report out this is the very stuff that the president was impeached over, this is the stuff that Senate Committees looked at and found nothing wrong in Joe Biden's interactions with Ukrainians and now having an email that perhaps there was a meeting with someone from Burisma it seems. Rudy Giuliani's sort of 'dream-o-vision' of how to throw stuff at the wall in these closing days of the campaign," Chalian said.