James O’Keefe, the founder and leader of Project Veritas, a conservative watchdog group that specializes in undercover investigations, has resigned from his position after facing pressure from his board of directors and an FBI investigation.
O’Keefe announced his resignation in a letter to his staff on Monday morning, saying that he was stepping down “to protect the integrity and mission” of Project Veritas. He also said that he was “proud of what we have accomplished together” and that he would “continue to fight for truth and justice.”
O’Keefe’s resignation comes after weeks of turmoil within Project Veritas, which has been accused of using deceptive tactics and editing videos to expose alleged corruption and bias in media, politics, education, and other institutions.
He has been clashing with his board members over his management style, spending decisions, legal strategy, and public relations. The board had reportedly placed him on paid leave earlier this month after receiving a memo from unhappy employees who complained about O’Keefe’s “outright cruel” behavior, lack of transparency, and disregard for their safety.
O’Keefe is also facing an FBI investigation into whether he or his associates were involved in stealing a diary belonging to Ashley Biden, President Joe Biden’s daughter. The diary was published by a right-wing website last year before the presidential election. O’Keefe has denied any involvement in the theft or publication of the diary.
Project Veritas was founded by O’Keefe in 2011 as a non-profit journalism enterprise to continue his undercover reporting work. The group has received funding from several conservative donors and organizations, including Charles Koch Foundation. It claims to investigate and expose corruption, dishonesty, self-dealing, waste, fraud, and other misconduct in both public and private institutions.
However, Project Veritas has also faced criticism and lawsuits for its controversial methods and allegations of fabricating or misleading evidence. Some of its targets have included Planned Parenthood, Nytimes, Twitter, The Washington Post, ACORN, NPR, Democratic politicians, teachers’ unions, Antifa activists, COVID-19 vaccine makers, and others.
It is unclear who will replace O’Keefe as the leader of Project Veritas or what will be the future direction of the group. In his resignation letter, O’Keefe said that he would “remain involved” with Project Veritas as an adviser and supporter.