James O'Keefe
Conservative activist James O'Keefe. Credit: Gage Skidmore/Flickr

So, this happened yesterday:

James O’Keefe, the conservative activist who attempted to plant a false story in The Washington Post this month about GOP Senate candidate Roy Moore, was presented Wednesday with an Impact Award, handed to him by Ginni Thomas, wife of Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas.

O’Keefe accepted the award on behalf of his organization, Project Veritas, at an event hosted by the conservative group United for Purpose at the Trump International Hotel in Washington, D.C..

“Proud to receive the Impact award from Ginni Thomas on behalf of the @project_veritas team,” O’Keefe wrote on Instagram, before praising other 2017 award recipients such as Fox New host Sean Hannity and Judicial Watch president Tom Fitton as “fighters.”

I just want to briefly review some facts here. James O’Keefe sent an employee named Jaime Phillips to spy on Washington Post reporters and try to get them on tape saying things that could be used to end their careers. This employee was then repurposed to tell a false story of being statutorily raped by Roy Moore as a teenager and impregnated. According to her tale, Moore drove her to Mississippi to get an abortion. The hope was that the Post’s reporters would report all of this as true. The next step, obviously, would have been to expose the story as fake and thereby undermine the reporting on Moore’s credible accusers.

Fortunately, the Post’s reporters were vigilant and figured out the entire scheme before publishing any false information. But the effort was clearly concocted in an effort to discredit Moore’s accusers and to give substance to the accusation that the mainstream press is biased and untrustworthy. And this was in the service of getting a plausibly-accused child molester elected to the U.S. Senate.

For this, the wife of a Supreme Court Justice gave him an award. And not just any Supreme Court Justice. Clarence Thomas was also plausibly accused of inappropriate sexual behavior, which you may remember from his confirmation hearings.

I don’t know if the conservative movement can get lower than this.  Unfortunately, I suspect they can.

Martin Longman

Martin Longman is the web editor for the Washington Monthly. See all his writing at ProgressPond.com