Appearing last night on Hannity, James O’Keefe joked about an advent calendar–like daily set of presents for CNN and its CEO, Jeff Zucker. If you haven’t heard already, Project Veritas has been recording telephone conference calls at CNN, courtesy of an inside whistleblower, according to what O’Keefe told Hannity (video embedded below). While CNN is fulminating about a lawsuit, O’Keefe is confident in his legal advisers’ position that recording and releasing the calls is legal.
CNN’s new corporate parent, AT&T, is rumored to be trying to sell the network in order to reduce its corporate debt. There are already worries that if Trump does not prevail in his lawsuits and Biden takes office, CNN will not be able use TDS as a lure for viewers. Further damage to its credibility via release of phone calls will not help in gathering viewers.
Here is a rush transcript of the interview. courtesy of Fox News, followed by video of O’Keefe’s appearance on Hannity:
SEAN HANNITY, FOX NEWS HOST: Now, breaking tonight, explosive new recordings from inside fake news CNN being released by Project Veritas, exposing fake news frauds like network chief Jeff Zucker like never before.
Now, earlier this morning, Project Veritas’ founder, CEO James O’Keefe, he called into CNN’s morning editorial call and — well, you would say Humpty Dumpty’s boss, Mr. Potato Head, didn’t know what was coming. Take a look.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JAMES O’KEEFE, FOUNDER AND CEO, PROJECT VERITAS: Hey, Jeff Zucker, are you there?
JEFF ZUCKER, CNN PRESIDENT: Yes?
O’KEEFE: Hey, this is James O’Keefe. We’ve been listening to your CNN calls for basically two months, recording everything. Just wanted to ask you some questions if you got a minute.
Do you still feel you’re the most trusted name in news? Because I have to say from what have been hearing on these phone calls, I don’t know about that. We’ve got a lot of recordings that indicate you’re not really that independent of a journalist.
ZUCKER: OK. Thank you for — thank you for your comments. So (ph) in light of that, I think what we’ll do is we’ll set up a new system.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HANNITY: Project Veritas tonight released the first installment of these recordings. And first up, we have a CNN field producer and Zucker talking about covering the president’s decision to not yet concede the race, suggesting CNN should frame the story by invoking the 9/11 terror attacks.
We always let you decide. Here’s the video.
(BEGIN AUDIO CLIP)
STEPHANIE BECKER, FIELD PRODUCER, CNN: The 9/11 report talks about one of the problems was that the trouble that was brewing got lost during the transition. So if you want a concrete example of what happens when you don’t have a good transition, but look at the Twin Towers.
ZUCKER: Yeah. So, I think that’s an important point. I think it was just a little bit yesterday in terms of national security. I think it’s really important to raise again.
(END AUDIO CLIP)
HANNITY: Now, do you ever remember fake news CNN talking about the national security implications of the Obama administration? You know, the deep state using Hillary’s dirty Russian misinformation dossier to spy on candidate Trump, President Trump, his administration, the biggest abuse of power corruption scandal in history?
No. They’re the ones that peddled the conspiracy theories, the Russian disinformation dossier, perpetuating years and years of a Russia hoax. What about those national security concerns?
They are glaring in their bias, and their utter, disgusting hypocrisy, couldn’t be more obvious, and it gets worse, because next up, October, President Trump recovering from the coronavirus, Zucker is now telling his staff they need to resist normalizing the president and to not normalize what Zucker calls desperate behavior.
Does this sound like objective news to you?
(BEGIN AUDIO CLIP)
ZUCKER: I think we cannot normalize what has happened here in the last week with Trump and his behavior, that this is a president who knows he’s losing, who knows he’s in trouble, is sick, maybe is on the after-effects of steroids or not, I don’t know, but he is acting erratically and desperately and we need to — we need to — we need to not normalize that.
(END AUDIO CLIP)
HANNITY: And Joe hiding, that was normal?
Lastly, weeks ago, Zucker instructing his staff to target Senator Lindsey Graham, saying the network needed to, quote, go well after Lindsey Graham. Target the guys we don’t like.
Take a look.
(BEGIN AUDIO CLIP)
ZUCKER: Frankly, if we’ve made any mistake, it’s been that our banners have been too polite, and we need to go well after Lindsey Graham. There is a lot of news out there, and Lindsey Graham really deserves it.
(END AUDIO CLIP)
HANNITY: CNN responded claiming that O’Keefe may have committed a felony, but didn’t offer any specifics or cite any laws allegedly violated.
Here now is the CEO. He is the founder of Project Veritas, James O’Keefe is with us.
All right, every time you’ve been sued, has anyone done so successfully?
O’KEEFE: No, Sean, we’ve won every single lawsuit at Project Veritas. And I know they said, quote, this is CNN communications, legal experts say this may be a felony. We have legal experts at Project Veritas. And we think Jeff Zucker is just very mad and embarrassed here for what we have exposed.
HANNITY: Now, you’re going to be on this program all week. And we’re going to release more tapes very week so we can focus in on what you’re going to release every day.
Now, they peddled this Russia lie for three years over there. They never apologized. They never corrected their record and they reported fake phony news and advanced conspiracy theories. They have stalkers of the FOX News Channel. And we’re getting lectured by them?
Is this a news organization to you?
O’KEEFE: No, Sean. This is — this is something that doesn’t shock people but confirms a lot of suspicions. To see the president of a media conglomerate barking orders at his reporters and journalists, telling them what to cover, what not to cover, that’s not anything resembling journalism I know.
I run an organization with a few dozen reporters. They come to me with facts. They’re not — I’m not — they are not yessing me, in fact, they are challenging me.
And what Jeff Zucker is doing on these phone calls is telling people what the story is, telling them what not to cover. This is — this is propaganda. And I think in a country where citizens have to exercise their rights and duties, the consent needs to be informed.
This is manufacturing consent. And we’ve never actually seen it, fly on the wall. You can actually hear the president of the company instruct his vice president — instruct his reporters what the narrative ought to be.
This is the farthest thing from journalism that I know. And I think that CNN owes an apology to the people. I mean, this is — this is disgraceful.
And this is the first time we’ve actually seen it, we can actually hear it.
HANNITY: Also, looks like an in-kind donation to everything Biden. It looks like they have picked a side. They picked Joe Biden’s side.
All right. You — the way you do things, you have a lot more coming.
How long did you record these morning calls?
O’KEEFE: Well, I told Zucker this morning when I live-streamed the call, I said, I’ve doing this for two months. And he was kind of shell-shocked by that. We’ve been recording for weeks and weeks, Sean.
It’s Christmas, December 1st. It’s going to be like I guess an advent calendar. We’re going to be releasing tapes every day, and we have more tapes tonight, tomorrow. And it’s going to be, you know — this is a brave whistle-blower insider who came to us with this information, Sean. And we encourage more people inside media enterprises to blow the whistle on the corruption inside big media.
HANNITY: All right, we look forward to installment two tomorrow. Thank you, James O’Keefe.
This article first appeared in americanthinker.com.