James O’Keefe is apparently ready to drop an October Surprise tape on Hillary Clinton — one he claims has the potential to shake-up a presidential race already brimming with controversy.
It was close to two weeks ago that the conservative journalist told followers that he had a video of Hillary Clinton allegedly “demeaning and disparaging” black people. He dropped the news to Twitter followers just after Clinton had bested Trump in the first debate and sent the Republican candidate’s poll numbers sinking.
O’Keefe said that October surprise is now ready to come out. In a tweet on Monday afternoon, he told followers that the release of the videos would begin on Tuesday.
O’Keefe has been a controversial media figure since he burst onto the national scene in 2009 with a video claiming to show officials at the non-profit group ACORN advising a self-professed pimp to apply for benefits and other funding. ACORN had been under fire from Republicans for allegations of voter registration fraud the previous year, and O’Keefe’s video led to a massive backlash.
But it later came out that the video was heavily edited and failed to show that the ACORN workers featured in the video actually responded to the situation appropriately, the Huffington Post noted in a 2010 story.
“The complaints included an embezzlement matter, several cases of voter registration fraud, and the release of edited and misleading videotapes, secretly made by conservative activists that appeared to implicate ACORN workers in several offices facilitating prostitution. In fact the staff in most of ACORN’s offices turned the pair away, reported the couple to the police, refused to provide them any aid, and in one case tried to convince the phony prostitute to get counseling. In no ACORN office did employees file any paperwork or do anything illegal on the duo’s behalf.”
O’Keefe found himself in more trouble in 2010, when he was arrested for trying to plant a recording device in the office of then-U.S. Senator Mary Landrieu, a Democrat from Louisiana. The next year O’Keefe was caught up in another scandal when he released a video that claimed to show NPR executives in a meeting with a group they believed to be representing the Muslim Brotherhood. This tape was also heavily edited.
While James O’Keefe has been reviled in progressive circles, he has gained a huge following in right-wing media for his ability to get under the skin of liberals. His announcement of a potential October Surprise showing Hillary Clinton disparaging black people was met with huge enthusiasm, becoming one of the top-voted posts on Reddit’s hub for Trump supporters, known as The_Donald.
James O’Keefe did not say what the tape would contain or how many more could follow after Tuesday’s release. But he has been talking up the October Surprise video for close to two weeks, saying it will rock the presidential race.
“I can’t wait to taste your tears after our October surprise video drops,” he wrote last week in response to someone asking for an apology for his deceptive ACORN videos. “People will be fired. Your head will explode. Sweet justice.”
O’Keefe also seemed to indicate that he would be timing his release of the evidence against Clinton.
“This week we drop smaller bombs across the country,” he tweeted on Tuesday. “Next week we drop atomic bombs.”
If James O’Keefe is able to deliver on his October Surprise, it could help even out a race that has tilted heavily toward Hillary Clinton. On Friday, the Washington Post published a video of Donald Trump speaking to Access Hollywood host Billy Bush in 2005. In the leaked audio, Trump could be heard making disparaging remarks against women, including claims that he would “grab them” by the genitals. A video like the one O’Keefe has described may help Trump to make up some of the ground lost in the days since the tape’s release.
[Featured Image by David Calvert/Getty Images]