This week, conservative film maker James O’Keefe released a new hidden camera expose on the New Jersey Education Association (the teacher’s union) called “Teacher’s Unions Gone Wild.” After it was released, the NJEA questioned its validity and context, and even accused O’Keefe of fabrication. Thursday, O’Keefe responded to that criticism by releasing new graphic video from his organization’s undercover investigation — footage he says proves the documentary is true.
O’Keefe released the video on his website along with a statement targeting the union:
The New Jersey Teacher’s Union (NJEA) has questioned the authenticity of the reports released under our “Teacher’s Unions Gone Wild” Investigation.
Specifically, the NJEA claims that our conversation with one of their members, Alissa Ploshnick, was taken out of context.
NJEA Spokesman Steve Wollmer has stated in numerous interviews that when referring to activity in the hallway, Ms. Ploshnick, was referring to “students in the hallway of Clifton High School 20 years ago . . . and that’s what it would take to get a teacher to report them.”
To clear this up, Project Veritas [O’Keefe’s company] has offered the raw audio of the conversation to many members of the media, and now to the public.
He encourages readers to “judge for yourself”:
[WARNING: Contains graphic and lewd language]
It remains to be seen if the new footage will convince the NJEA. It seems unlikely given the union’s initial response:
In August, “citizen journalists” from O’Keefe’s Project Veritas apparently attended sessions and social events at the NJEA Summer Leadership Conference in East Brunswick. They surreptitiously recorded audio and video of members and presenters, and produced a series of videos titled “Teacher’s Unions Gone Wild,” a sophomoric takeoff on the TV show “Girls Gone Wild.” Several individuals identified as NJEA members were caught unaware on camera, and the resulting product featured proven doctored video and audio.
A spokesman for the union echoed that message to the Daily Record on Tuesday:
“It’s impossible to know where he got this, where he twisted it from,” Baker said. “There’s a lot of audio, no video, and you don’t know where the audio is from. The whole thing is a complete fabrication, built on lies.”
Others too have questioned the documentary’s validity. In fact, O’Keefe got into a contentious exchange with a Philadelphia news anchor earlier this week regarding fabrication charges.
Not everyone has been critical, though. Outspoken NJEA critic and New Jersey Gov. Chris Christi has praised the film.