O’Rourke Campaign Caught Discussing Illegally Using Campaign Funds to Help Caravan Migrants
Project Veritas Action Fund Thursday night released its eighth undercover video revealing Democratic lies and deceit in the 2018 midterm elections. The newest episode features members of U.S. Senate candidate Beto O’Rourke’s campaign plotting to use campaign funds to help Honduran caravan migrants.
The video actually shows his campaign staff talking about using campaign resources to buy supplies and help transport Honduran aliens. Whether or not this is a good idea is beside the point. It's totally illegal.
Said James O’Keefe, founder and president of Project Veritas Action, “Charity and helping your fellow man are things we applaud at Project Veritas Action. The problem is, you can’t break the law when you do it.”
O’Rourke’s campaign staffers, Dominic Chacon and AnaPaula Themann, didn't appear too concerned about getting caught, however.
“The Hondurans, yeah,... I’m going to go get some food right now, like, just some stuff to drop off,” Chacon, O'Rourke's field manager, can be heard saying in the video.
Themann asked how the migrants got through.
“Well, I think they accepted them as, like, asylum seekers…. So, I’m going to get some groceries and some blankets,” Chacon replied.
“Don’t ever repeat this and stuff but, like, if we just say we’re buying food for some event, like the Halloween events...” Themann cautioned.
“That’s not a horrible idea, but I didn’t hear anything. Umm, we can wait til tomorrow for that,” Chacon said
“Well, that’s exactly the food we need. And I will just mark it as... I do have dozens of block walkers," Themann added.
As "block walkers" are campaign workers who go door to door to talk to voters and campaign for candidates, Themann likely meant that they would mark the expenditure down as meals for them.
Chacon and Themann discussed how they would "mask" their use of campaign funds to buy food for the migrants.
“There’s actually stores that mark it as just ‘food,’ they don’t mark any types… at Albertsons, on the receipts, it marks it just based off of brand,” Themann explained.
Chacon added, “I think we can use that with those [campaign pre-paid] cards to buy some food... All that s**t can be totally masked like, oh, we just wanted a healthy breakfast!”
A Project Veritas Action attorney who reviewed the footage said that it looks like the O’Rourke campaign violated FEC rules.
The material Project Veritas Action Fund captured shows campaign workers covering up the true nature of spending of campaign funds and intentionally misreporting them. This violates the FEC’s rules against personal use and misreporting. It also violates Section 1001, making a false statement to the federal government. The FEC violations impose civil penalties, including fines of up to $10,000 or 200 percent of the funds involved. Violations of Section 1001 are criminal and include imprisonment of up to five years.
Themann seemed to acknowledge she was aware of the risk of being caught violating FEC rules when she said that she doesn’t “want it to make it seem like all of us" from the O’Rourke campaign are distributing supplies to the Honduran aliens. She added, “I just hope nobody that’s the wrong person finds out about this.”
Chacon liked the idea of using pre-paid campaign cards, saying, “We’re going to some use more of those cards to get them more supplies, too. So it’s all going to work out. I'm done. I’m done being nice. I’m done being professional. [Be]cause nothing is professional. None of this is, like, s**t there is a rulebook for, you know?”
Later Chacon noted, “There’s not really an approval process” regarding the usage of the pre-paid cards, and that “we can just go and get the food and we can come up with a BS excuse, like, as to why we needed to get this stuff.” He added: “Under the table, just sort of like do sh*t.”
He indicated that Jody Casey, the campaign manager for the O’Rourke campaign, was pleased to hear about their illegal scheme to support the Honduran migrants with campaign funds.
“She texted us afterward, she's like, I’m so happy that we have a staff that, you know, gets it and was there. I was so happy to see all y’all there and still working, still contributing. We have the best team ever… she was good about it,” Chacon said.
The Project Veritas journalist pressed, “So, Jody knows?”
“Well, she doesn’t know we used the pre-paid card, but it's ok, she doesn’t need to know,” Chacon replied.
He went on to even suggest the possibility of using campaign vans to help the Honduran aliens, saying they could "get away with using the vans… Nobody needs to know,” Chacon said, adding, “For me, I can ignore the rules and I’m like f**k it.”
“We’re going to use that to give some of those immigrants rides to, like, the airport, to the bus station. Why not, you know?” he added.
The Project Veritas journalist expressed concern about getting caught using the campaign funds to help the Honduran aliens, but Casey said, “Don’t worry.”
Andrea Reyes, another O’Rourke campaign worker, revealed that she has text messages showing she received approval for using the pre-paid cards. “The thing is that, yeah, as long as we’re not advertising it. I mean, yeah, I don’t really know," she said nervously. "They said it was fine so -- *throws hands up* -- I mean, I don’t know, okay? I told you about it! I have the messages to prove it, sooo…”
The PVA journalist said, “So you told, like, Jody?”
“Yeah. I told Jody and I told my director,” Reyes replied.
Prior to publishing his undercover video, James O'Keefe asked O’Rourke’s campaign manager about the apparent use of campaign funds to assist Honduran caravan migrants. "She said 'no comment' multiple times," O'Keefe reported on Twitter.