Ken Klippenstein blames Candace Owens for being fired after pulling Memorial Day prank on Matt Gaetz

Ken Klippenstein claims he was fired from The Intercept after Candace Owens took offense for his Memorial Day prank targetting conservatives like Matt Gaetz, Matt Schlapp, and Dinesh D'Souza

                            Ken Klippenstein blames Candace Owens for being fired after pulling Memorial Day prank on Matt Gaetz
Candace Owens and Ken Klippenstein (Jason Kempin/Getty Images, @kenklipp via Instagram)

Jokes can have serious consequences, as journalist Ken Klippenstein recently discovered. Klippenstein took to Twitter to announce he had been fired from his job, at The Intercept, following a prank he played on Rep Matt Gaetz, Matt Schlapp, and Dinesh D'Souza. But they aren't to blame for his firing, according to him. He tweeted that Candace Owens was responsible for his dismissal.

Klippenstein took the Internet by storm on May 31, after he jokingly sent a photo of Lee Harvey Oswald in his military uniform to Gaetz, Schlapp, and D'Souza, asking them to retweet 'his grandfather' on the occasion of Memorial Day. All three did so, before realizing it was a prank and deleted their tweets. Owens though, ended up in a bit of a row with Klippenstein, before she too deleted one of her tweets.


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Trolling conservatives is nothing new. Klippenstein pulled a similar prank on former Iowa Rep Steve King in 2019. In April, MyPillow CEO Mike Lindell was pranked during a show when a caller pretended to be Trump. But it seems like Klippenstein has gone too far on this occasion if his tweets are to be believed. 


What happened to Ken Klippenstein?

Shortly after he pranked Gaetz, Schlapp and D'Souza, Owens replied to that tweet and said, "you are making a mockery of a day that is meant to memorialize men that died so that you and other anti-American leftists can laugh at their sacrifices by photoshopping a murder into their uniforms".

She has since deleted that tweet, but responded to Klippenstein with another, in which she said, "It is not 'political correctness' to have a soul and a modicum of decency. Reminder: These men DIED— the majority of them on foreign soil—so that you could be free. You do not photoshop murderers into their uniforms so that you can have a laugh."


Twitter users were quick to point out that the image was not photoshopped, and that Oswald did indeed serve in the United States Marine Corps. The exchange led to Owens being widely trolled for her lack of knowledge. It's unclear what happened next, but hours after that exchange Klippenstein tweeted, "Tell Candace Owens I hope she’s happy I’ve been let go from my job." 


He followed that announcement up with a series of tweets targeting Owens, like, "Ken Klippenstein fired for truth !!!!!!!" and "STOP THE (CANDACE OWENS) STEAL (OF MY JOB)!"



It's unclear if Klippenstein was actually fired. While his Twitter handle has been changed to say #FiredForTruth, his LinkedIn profile still lists him as The Intercept's National Security Reporter.

The Intercept's website also has his biography up, so it is unclear if he was actually fired. It is also not known what role Owens played in Klippenstein's firing. He has, however, started his own Substack newsletter shortly after his tweet claiming he was fired. We've reached out to Klippenstein for more information and will update this article as and when we receive more details. 

Candace Owens speaks to guests during the NRA-ILA Leadership Forum at the 148th NRA Annual Meetings & Exhibits on April 26, 2019 in Indianapolis, Indiana. (Scott Olson/Getty Images)

Twitter slams Owens 'assault on free speech'

The news of Klippenstein's firing traveled quickly through social media, leading to some lamenting his dismissal. Others celebrated him facing the consequences of playing the Memorial Day prank. One person tweeted, "@RealCandaceO's political correctness got Ken Klippenstein fired from his job. Now she's deleting tweets to cover up her assault on free speech." Fellow journalist Luke Savage said, "Solidarity with the recently fired @kenklippenstein, terminated for the crime of truth."



"i stand adjacent to ken klippenstein who was fired by candace owens in a vile act of censorship," said one person. Another said, "cancel culture and the woke mob cannot handle your truth ken. dont let them silence you." One person joked, "An hour from now I'm going to type "was" into google and I expect first result of autocomplete to be "was Ken Klippenstein really fired"."




Klippenstein made a name for himself with The Intercept, and previously with The Nation for using the Freedom of Information Acts (FOIA) to uncover major stories. Now, he looks like he'll be joining the hundreds of other journalists on SubStack, if he has indeed been fired.

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