Culture

A Right-Wing Sting Operation Is Trying To Trick Media Orgs Into Running Made-Up Stories About Roy Moore

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To date, all of the sexual misconduct allegations against Senate candidate Roy Moore are lurid and packed with graphic detail. Some are so outrageous that one could be forgiven for initially wondering if they could possibly be true, but that’s where journalistic fact-checking comes into play. And unfortunately for right-wing organization Project Veritas, the Washington Post was able to weed out an entirely false (and very dramatic) story about Moore as delivered by an underground sting operative.

In a 9-minute video that you can see at the Post, the publication notes that it identified several inconsistencies in the female operative’s story. The woman, who contacted the paper with a cryptic email, had claimed that Moore impregnated her as a teenager and pressured her to have an abortion. As it turns out, her false account was designed — as with all other Project Veritas endeavors — to embarrass the media. The Post declined to publish the woman’s unsubstantiated account, and they pressed her (in an on-camera conversation) about her “facts” after her backstory didn’t check out. The woman insisted that she wasn’t trying to target the media with a false story, but the Post discovered that she was lying about that as well:

[O]n Monday morning, Post reporters saw her walking into the New York offices of Project Veritas, an organization that targets the mainstream news media and left-leaning groups. The organization sets up undercover “stings” that involve using false cover stories and covert video recordings meant to expose what the group says is media bias.

James O’Keefe, the founder of Project Veritas who was convicted of a misdemeanor in 2010 for using a fake identity to enter a federal building during a previous sting, declined to answer questions about the woman outside the Project Veritas office, a storefront in Mamaroneck, N.Y., on Monday morning shortly after the woman walked inside.

The Post managed to track down James O’Keefe on camera, and he simply responded that “I’m not going to say a word.” (Nor did Moore’s campaign have any comment when contacted, but there’s no indication as to whether his team knew about this sting at all.) As for the Roy Moore “tipster” who spoke with the Post, she was unable (or rather, unwilling) to provide accurate information with which the Post could have corroborated her true identity. Claims about past employers and job interviews didn’t check out, and so on.

In the video clip, the woman can be seen attempting to retract her story when further pressed by the Post about her intentions and why her stated “facts” were all so sketchy. And in response, Twitter had a grand time celebrating the Post for their damn fine journalism.

(Via Washington Post)

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