James O’Keefe Wins Major Lawsuit In Oregon

O’Keefe Media Group (OMG) owner James O’Keefe has won a major victory in Oregon after the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals ruled in favor of O’Keefe and Project Veritas — overturning a law prohibiting recording in Oregon.

The lawsuit was filed in Portland, Oregon in 2020 by O’Keefe and the organization he founded, Project Veritas. O’Keefe has since been forced out of the nonprofit organization for dubious reasons and started another undercover journalism enterprise while Project Veritas has lost a lot of support.

O’Keefe’s latest legal victory came in the case of Project Veritas v. Schmidt, with the nonprofit arguing that it had a right to engage in undercover journalism that involved recording people without their consent.

In a post on Twitter, O’Keefe celebrated the news, tweeting: “WON in Ninth Circuit – Federal Appeals Court STRIKES DOWN Oregon criminal recording law.”

He went on to quote the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals’ ruling, writing: “It violates the 1st amendment right to free speech, INVALID ON ITS FACE.”

In another lengthy tweet, O’Keefe described the victory and what it means for free speech and undercover journalism.

“Oregon Revised Statute 165.540(1)(c). This law prohibited anyone from making an audio recording unless that person ‘specifically informed’ others they were recording. But the law also included special permissions from the government to allow for non-notified recording of the police, but not any other government employee,” he wrote.

“That just leaves the government putting its thumb on the lens of newsgathering, deciding which news is easiest to get and skewing reporting. Like the Ninth Circuit has explained before, whatever concerns Oregon has over shoddy reporting or ‘fake news,’ the remedy for speech that is false is speech that is true and not the suppression of speech,” O’Keefe continued.

The opinion in the lawsuit was authored by Circuit Judge Sandra S. Ikuta out of the Ninth Circuit in Pasadena, California.

“Oregon does not have a compelling interest in protecting individuals’ conversational privacy from other individuals’ protected speech in places open to the public, even if that protected speech consists of creating audio or visual recordings of other people,” the judge wrote.

This news comes amid another legal battle for O’Keefe, as he is being sued by Project Veritas — where the company he founded is now trying to stop him from creating a new company that will compete with them.