The whirlwind of controversy surrounding Project Veritas and the removal of founder James O’Keefe is only intensifying as donors balk at continuing their support of the organization.
O’Keefe founded the journalistic outfit in 2010 and built it into a leading conservative powerhouse for exposing the hypocrisy of the left wing. But last week, the board removed him from his CEO position and stripped his board seat, effectively forcing him out.
Of course, one battle currently raging is between those who believe he jumped as opposed to being pushed. For its part, the board clarified that O’Keefe was only suspended for a limited time.
The now-former CEO rebutted this, saying in an Instagram post that “I need to make clear I have not resigned from the company, Project Veritas, I founded 13 years ago.”
What is definitely known is that donors are up in arms over O’Keefe’s departure, and they are letting the board know in no uncertain terms. Now comes an email from the “Project Veritas Team” drawing a fierce line of distinction between the “team” and the company’s board.
After acknowledging the flak coming in from disgruntled donors, the “team” insisted that it is distinctly separate from the board and continues to conduct daily operations.
And it’s “grinding and pursuing stories of great public importance.”
In 2023, people still vote with their dollars. There is no doubt that Project Veritas is hemorrhaging funding as donors looking instead to follow the person who built the effort. People also vote with their social media following, and the numbers after O’Keefe’s departure are quite telling.
In just over a day, analytics firm Social Blade reported that the Project Veritas Twitter account lost over 214,000 followers. Almost 192,000 of those unfollowed the account on Feb. 20 alone — the day of the founder and CEO’s departure.
Many donors publicly withdrew their support of the organization and pledged to follow O’Keefe into whichever direction he chooses. One powerful conservative voice, Candace Owens, proclaimed herself a donor but then said that Project Veritas “is done.”
Others are following suit.
The messy divorce at Project Veritas appears to be headed into a courtroom. However, it is tough to imagine a scenario where O’Keefe does not land firmly on his feet and continue his journalistic exposition through a new organization.