Politics

 

Conservative activist James O'Keefe claims Cuomo is trying to run him out of NY

Conservative activist James O'Keefe claims Cuomo is trying to run him out of NY

Do extreme conservatives pranksters and videographers have no place in New York State either?

Late last week, Gov. Andrew Cuomo ignited a firestorm of criticism in right-wing media when he told a public radio host that  “extreme conservatives who are right-to-life, pro-assault-weapon, anti-gay … have no place in the State of New York.”

Cuomo was referring to the prospects of far-right political candidates in the deeply Democratic Empire State, not the prospects of his own far right constituents. Nevertheless, conservative talkers like Sean Hannity said they were moving out of state, conservative bloggers called for a boycott of state businesses and products, and New York Republicans demanded an apology.

Now James O’Keefe, the conservative activist whose deceptively edited videos helped bring down ACORN and led to the resignation of top brass at National Public Radio, says that Cuomo’s administration is in fact trying to run him out of the state.

O’Keefe’s organization, Project Veritas, has had its headquarters in Westchester County, just north of New York City, since 2011. And O’Keefe says that the state’s Department of Labor is now demanding two and a half years worth of financial and payroll documents and threatening them with a subpoena.

“Despite the fact that Project Veritas’s finances are meticulously maintained to the penny, Governor Cuomo and the New York Department of Labor is on a witch-hunt, demanding all documents and financials since our founding,” reads a post on the group’s website. “This is nothing more than meritless, politically-driven targeting. Governor Cuomo said it himself–we don’t belong in New York.”

According to O’Keefe, the group compiled the requested documents for a meeting scheduled last December. However, compliance officials from the Department of Labor failed to appear.

According to Jennifer Ridgely, a spokeswoman for Project Veritas, the inquiry has to with whether or not employees with the group are classified as full-time or contract labor.

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