Politicians, when sat down in a front of a small group of their biggest donors, are likely to do one thing: tell the truth.
Investigative journalist James O'Keefe understands that, and exploited it in his newest video. In it, he attended a high-dollar California fundraising event for U.S. Senate candidate Russ Feingold, a Wisconsin Democrat, and recorded for his Project Veritas initiative.
Feingold's running against the man who unseated him six years ago, U.S. Sen. Ron Johnson (R-Wis.), in a tightly contested race. But during the fundraiser, talk turned to the 2016 presidential race, particularly one of Feingold's top issues: gun control.
"There might be executive order," he said in response to a question about how a President Hillary Clinton might act on Second Amendment-protected rights if Republicans still control Congress. "[President Obama] did some executive orders with the aspects of waiting periods, but what we all need is to win the Senate, have her there, and then put pressure on the House—and we might win the House."
Those comments are particularly relevant, given one of the roughly 9,000 emails now released by WikiLeaks that details how Clinton might act, if elected president, on gun control. In the October 2015 email chain, campaign spokesman Brian Fallon said there were three main actions she would be likely to take:
Circling back around on guns as a follow up to the Friday morning discussion: the Today show has indicated they definitely plan to ask bout guns, and so to have the discussion be more of a news event than her previous times discussing guns, we are going to background reporters tonight on a few of the specific proposals she would support as president—universal background checks of course, but also closing the gun show loophole by executive order and imposing manufacturer liability.
Clinton's staff was concerned they were getting beaten by U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) on the issue of gun control. They were strategizing a way to get the liberal mainstream media to help them get the message out about Clinton's own policy proposals.
A campaign consultant also weighed in, noting that she recalled Clinton had advocated for a 25-percent "gun tax" on firearms sales in 1993.
The Project Veritas video also includes comments from one of Hillary Clinton's friends, Amy Rao, who was hosting the Feingold fundraiser. The Clinton confidante said she believed the former secretary of state was serious about "getting rid of guns."
"Hillary wants to shut [the "gun show loophole"] down," Rao said. "If we can get guns away from everyone in this country, she'll close the loopholes, she'll get rid of assault weapons, she'll get rid of everyone being able to buy—you know—unlimited bullets, she's gonna make all that stop."
A Feingold campaign donor responded to another question: Why does Feingold defend handgun ownership?
"Because he wants to get elected," she said. "He's from Wisconsin."
Feingold himself further clarified his position:
"But what I do is I go with the majority view of the people of the state, which is very common sense. They believe there should be background checks. Overwhelmingly, they believe there should be background checks for the Internet and for gun shows."
Rao seemed to think his stance was sensible, even if it wasn't entirely popular with the Left Coast Silicon Valley crowd:
"You're never gonna get guns totally out of their hands. It's the Second Amendment, right?" she said. "But you can get sensible gun laws passed, and Obama didn't do it. If anyone can do it, she'll do it."
The new video is one of three Project Veritas has released in the same number of days. Previous video releases described voter fraud efforts in New York State and a Clinton presidential campaign staffer bragging about his ability to get away with inappropriate conduct with women who also work for the campaign.
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