Posted by Brad @ 5:20 pm on January 26th 2010

James O’Keefe Arrested

Remember him? The guy that plotted the whole ACORN sting operation and played the pimp and Rojas put him on the blogroll for like a week and then Congress passed an unconstitutional law about it?

Anyway, he just got arrested for allegedly trying to bug Senator Mary Landrieu’s office.

The FBI, alleging a plot to wiretap Democratic Sen. Mary Landrieu’s office in downtown New Orleans, arrested four people Monday, including James O’Keefe, a conservative filmmaker whose undercover videos at ACORN field offices severely damaged the advocacy group’s credibility.

FBI Special Agent Steven Rayes alleges that O’Keefe aided and abetted two others, Joseph Basel and Robert Flanagan, who dressed up as employees of a telephone company and attempted to interfere with the office’s telephone system.

A fourth person, Stan Dai, was accused of aiding and abetting Basel and Flanagan. All four were charged with entering fedral property under false pretenses with the intent of committing a felony.



  1. Man, if you’re going to bug somewhere, don’t do it on Federal property.

    Comment by Adam — 1/26/2010 @ 5:27 pm

  2. Yeah, I guess they still frown on trying to bug a United States Senator even if they’re liberal! Who knew?

    What’s funny is you know exactly what he was thinking. He was going to catch her in some real embarrassing behind-the-scenes talk, maybe even taking a bribe!, and humiliate her and probably sink her reelection and conservatives would lift him on their shoulders and parade him around again.

    It apparently didn’t occur to a single one of them that A. if they did play the tapes as part of some great gag, it would probably come out, at least to the FBI, that they bugged her phone, at which point what precisely did they think would happen? and B. that liberals in the United States Senate might get phone calls not necessarily pertaining to corruption or hilarious cynicism, but also sensitive national security information and intelligence briefings and the like. My guess is these guys are so partisan that, had this happened to Orrin Hatch, that would have been the first thought in their minds, but with Mary Landrieu, it didn’t even occur to them.

    Anyway, someone’s 15 minutes of political geek fame are over in 5, 4, 3…

    Comment by Brad — 1/26/2010 @ 7:39 pm

  3. I imagine it wasn’t so much being after a bribe as after hearing some seedy horse-trading.

    The evidence of bugging hasn’t yet been presented, has it?

    It certainly looks pretty stupid, though.

    Comment by Adam — 1/26/2010 @ 7:42 pm

  4. Stupid kid.

    Warrantless surveillance is only OK when the government does it.

    Comment by Rojas — 1/26/2010 @ 9:02 pm

  5. The son of the Louisiana AG doesn’t count? *snap* WHY DID NO ONE TELL THEM?

    Comment by thimbles — 1/27/2010 @ 12:48 am

  6. The FBI affidavit.

    Josh Marshall reminds me, and I had forgotten, that 31 Republican Congressmen co-sponsored a bill specifically to honor James O’Keefe.

    Comment by Brad — 1/27/2010 @ 10:12 am

  7. Man, if youíre going to bug somewhere, donít do it on Federal property.

    The second reason why being: it’s really quite hard.

    TPM Reader PHB points out just how over their heads O’Keefe and company were in their failed attempt to bug the offices of Sen. Mary Landrieu, not realizing that the GSA has a bunch of different security protocols meant to resist espionage, let alone twenty-something right-wing cranks …

    The FBI account of the attack reads like a bad script from an episode of the A-team. To me it seems pretty clear that having successfully bamboozled the minimum wage employees of Acorn, the O’Keefe four were rather full of themselves. They don’t appear to have considered the fact that the security procedures in place at GSA run facilities are explicitly designed to resist espionage attempts by the KGB, GRU or any other world-class intelligence agency.

    Comment by Brad — 1/27/2010 @ 3:28 pm

  8. Maybe they’d watched too much ’24’. Man, that CTU is really easy to infiltrate.

    Comment by Redland Jack — 1/27/2010 @ 4:21 pm

  9. Less dumb. Still dumb.

    A law enforcement official told NBC News that the four men were not trying to intercept or wiretap the calls.

    Instead the men, led by O’Keefe, wanted to see how her staff would respond if the phones were inoperative, the official said.

    They were apparently motivated by local criticism of Landrieu — some voters reportedly felt it was too difficult to get through to her office to register their views.

    Comment by Brad — 1/28/2010 @ 12:09 pm

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