During the run up to last year’s Presidential election, conservatives rejoiced that some film maker named James O’Keefe managed to turn a community organizing group that was virtually unknown prior to the 2008 election cycle into a lightning rod for the budding tea party movement. O’Keefe walked into an ACORN office and managed to convince some of the staff that he was a prospective pimp and solicited advice in setting up a brothel. Stupid? Yes. But probably funnier than criminal.
Anyway, O’Keefe became a hero and 31 house representatives loved this conservative Michael Moore so much that they wanted the United States Congress to declare a proclamation praising him for “saving taxpayers millions of dollars” (that are now being paid to more expensive organizations) when he helped make ACORN a pariah to any elected official. Of those 31 co-sponsors were, you might want to sit down because this is going to utterly not shock you — Oklahoma representatives Tom Cole and Mary Fallin.
Why is this supposed to be embarrassing? Well, while Fallin and her cohorts might call ACORN’s advice to a fake pimp “illegal activities” it really isn’t. You know what is illegal? Wire tapping a United States senator. That’s what O’Keefe has just been accused of doing.
That, by itself, probably isn’t really enough to accuse Representative (and Governor hopeful) Fallin of impropriety. On the other hand, having one of O’Keefe’s co-conspirators, Robert Flanagan, on her payroll suggests some influence. Even better is that Flanagan, the son of one of the U.S. Attorneys who feels that warrantless wiretapping was constitutional, had ACCORDING TO HIS LINKED IN PROFILE the role of advising Congresswoman Fallin’s STAFF on matters of national security. Now he’s accused of using that practice for the purpose of helping a documentary film maker and targeting a political opponent of Flanagan’s former employer.
I’d go into more detail, but I suspect The Oklahoman is going to do an in depth investigative report on the topic.
(UPDATE: This article was updated to make it clearer that the national security briefing claim was from Flanagan’s resume on his Linked In profile.)