Both the New York State Supreme Court and the New York State Appellate Division of the Supreme Court ruled that The New York Times cannot publish the private and privileged communications of Project Veritas’ attorneys representing Project Veritas in Veritas’ defamation case against The Times.
Recently, the same appellate court granted The New York Times a procedural victory in its Motion for a Stay on Discovery which delays Project Veritas’ depositions of the paper’s reporters until The Times’ appeal of its defeated Motion to Dismiss is decided. The Motion for Stay ruling prohibits both The Times and Veritas from engaging in behavior such as publishing each other’s attorney-client privileged information.
Dean Baquet, New York Times Executive Editor: “This ruling [temporarily prohibiting the publishing of Veritas’ privileged attorney-client information] is unconstitutional and sets a dangerous precedent. When a court silences journalism, it fails its citizens and undermines their right to know. The Supreme Court made that clear in the Pentagon Papers case, a landmark ruling against prior restraint blocking the publication of newsworthy journalism. That principle clearly applies here. We are seeking an immediate review of this decision.”
Baquet remained silent about the FBI raids on Project Veritas journalists while press freedom advocates and members of the media condemned the First Amendment violations that took place.
[NEW YORK – Nov. 23, 2021] Project Veritas released a new video today refuting The New York Times’ legally-flawed claim that the New York State Supreme Court acted in an “unconstitutional” way when it ruled that The Times must temporarily stop publishing Veritas’ attorney-client privileged communications with the attorneys representing Veritas in the defamation case, and further ordered The Times to explain the reasoning behind why they did so in an article earlier this month.
Veritas is currently suing The Times for defamation after they libelously labelled a September 2020 video exposing ballot harvesting in Minnesota as “deceptive.” The lawsuit was filed over a year ago.
The Times suffered this latest legal defeat on Thursday and filed an immediate appeal. The paper’s executive editor, Dean Baquet, claimed the court was attempting to silence journalism.
“This ruling [temporarily prohibiting the publishing of Veritas’ privileged attorney-client information] is unconstitutional and sets a dangerous precedent. When a court silences journalism, it fails its citizens and undermines their right to know. The Supreme Court made that clear in the Pentagon Papers case, a landmark ruling against prior restraint blocking the publication of newsworthy journalism. That principle clearly applies here. We are seeking an immediate review of this decision,” Baquet said.
The following day, Friday, New York State’s Appellate Division of the Supreme Court affirmed the Supreme Court’s ruling that was issued the day prior – handing yet another legal defeat to the “Paper of Record.”
The New York Times must now prove that both courts are anti-First Amendment if they are to keep their narrative alive.
What makes it even more difficult for The Times’ narrative is that the same appellate court that ruled in Veritas’ favor on Friday also granted the Times’ Motion for Stay just a few weeks ago.
Project Veritas founder and CEO, James O’Keefe, questioned Baquet’s position on the recent FBI raids of Veritas journalists given The Times’ alleged staunch position in favor of the First Amendment.
“The New York Times decided to release our attorney-client memos. Which, by the way, we are very proud of what is in those memos. As the New York Post headline said, they included a ‘strategy of trying to avoid breaking federal law,’” O’Keefe said.
“Mr. Dean Baquet, where was your citation to the Pentagon Papers and the First Amendment when the FBI raided my home, and took my phones and my reporter notes? Or were you busy publishing our attorney-client memos?”
Politico, The Washington Post, the ACLU, and many other organizations have published statements condemning the violations of Project Veritas’ press freedoms. The New York Times has yet to make an official statement to that effect.
About Project Veritas
James O'Keefe established Project Veritas in 2010 as a non-profit journalism enterprise to continue his undercover reporting work. Today, Project Veritas investigates and exposes corruption, dishonesty, self-dealing, waste, fraud, and other misconduct in both public and private institutions to achieve a more ethical and transparent society and to engage in litigation to: protect, defend and expand human and civil rights secured by law, specifically First Amendment rights including promoting the free exchange of ideas in a digital world; combat and defeat censorship of any ideology; promote truthful reporting; and defend freedom of speech and association issues including the right to anonymity. O'Keefe serves as the CEO and Chairman of the Board so that he can continue to lead and teach his fellow journalists, as well as protect and nurture the Project Veritas culture.
Project Veritas is a registered 501(c)3 organization. Project Veritas does not advocate specific resolutions to the issues raised through its investigations.
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