James O'Keefe Leaves Project Veritas: "I Have No Position Here Based Upon What The Board Has Done"
James O'Keefe announced his exit from Project Veritas in a video message posted Monday: "I was stripped of all decision-making last week... Currently, I have no job at Project Veritas. I have no position here based upon what the board has done — so I’m announcing to you all that today, on Presidents’ Day, I’m packing up my personal belongings here."
"I asked the board to resign for their conduct-- they did not. So currently, I have no position at PV based on the board's actions. So, I'm announcing to you all that today on President's day — I'm packing up my personal effects from headquarters, and I'm intending to start anew," O'Keefe said.
"As a former border member told me 10 years ago, Project Veritas will never be stopped from the outside," he said. "It will only be because we stopped ourselves... Prophetic as it may be, that is exactly where we find ourselves in the situation today. A situation where I have been stripped of my authority as CEO and removed from the Board of Directors. I bet you didn't know that."
O'Keefe explained his fight with board members:
O'KEEFE: I'm going to take you through what happened. Some of you don't know these things. We're talking about the story we broke. An unusual emergency happened on Thursday, February the 2nd - that's a few days after the Pfizer story - I was informed by an officer of Project Veritas on the phone while enroute to the airport that he would resign unless I stepped down as CEO.
We've been having a conflict visions, him and I over fundraising... there were tactical disagreements about the boldness of approaches soliciting donations. I was told, and I'm paraphrasing, by asking for X dollars right now you will prevent 10x dollars down the road. That advice ran contrary to everything I knew to be true in my 13 years of fundraising. But that conflict was even more fundamental and essentially boiled down to this and my vision. I'm going to paraphrase Howard Roark, the architect, quote, 'I don't build in order to have donors. I have donors in order to build.' That's what I believed and I felt like we had a conflict of visions.
We measure our success in terms of what we produce, not just in terms of our wallets. That was a pretty fundamental conflict I felt. The day prior, I informed him in front of his colleagues that if he wasn't willing to follow my lead he'd be shown the door. I tried to deal with it privately but I was unsuccessful and the disagreement boiled over publicly in a staff meeting. The next day, this individual refused to resign so I fired him.
Later that same day, that's Thursday, February 2nd, a few days after the 50 million viewed Pfizer videos. I was informed by a different officer of Project Veritas that he would go to the board in a few hours from that moment and have an emergency vote to restructure this company, receiving an agenda in my email while I was sitting on an airplane tarmac with the doors closing, the meeting was scheduled for the moment that my plane landed in Nashville...
It became clear to me in that moment I would be removed from my position at Project Veritas by the time I landed at my destination. So, our mission continues on. I'm not done. The mission will perhaps take on a new name. And it may be no longer called Veritas. Project Veritas. There will be a bunch of people around me and I'll make sure you know how to find me.
O'Keefe sent a letter to Project Veritas employees explaining his decision and the events that led to it:
See letter at realclearpolitics.com