Eric O'Keefe is a right-wing political operative that has deep ties to the Koch brothers.He started in the Libertarian movement int he 1980s, worked to enact congressional term limits in the 1990s, and transitioned into a leader of the Tea Party movement in the late 2000s. His group, the Sam Adams Alliance, led to the founding of numerous tea party organizations.
In October 2013, O'Keefe was served with a subpoena in the investigation into the funding of Scott Walker's campaign against public-sector unions and subsequent recall election. The investigation was conducted under Wisconsin's John Doe laws, which is similar to a grand jury investigation. O'Keefe spoke to the Wall Street Journal, detailing the subpoena's requests. The Journal's article spun the investigation as unnecessary probing and an attack on free speech.
Ties to Right-Wing Groups
Sam Adams Alliance
O'Keefe founded the Sam Adams Alliance (SAM) and served as chairman and CEO. According to O'Keefe's website, SAM was intended to be a right wing source of support for freedom of speech and discussion of political issues, training citizens to be activists and bloggers. The organization was active from 2007 to 2011. The development of SAM led to the foundations of the tea party movement, allowing activists like Eric Odom the opportunity to develop websites and social media as a organizational platform. Odom was SAM's new media director before he branched out on his own.
Koch Funded Groups
O'Keefe has been featured at events funded by David Koch's Americans for Prosperity (AFP) group which is heavily involved in supporting right-wing politicians with independent expenditures and other assistance that stretches the limits of legality. He sits on the board of the Koch's Institute for Humane Studies(IHS). SAM's internship recruitment page was connected to Koch Industries through the Charles G. Koch Summer Fellow Program. The program was administered through the IHS and the State Policy Network and featured on the IHS website.
In 1980, the Libertarian Party presidential ticket was Ed Clark and David Koch. O'Keefe worked as the national director of the party that year in support of Clark/Koch.
O'Keefe helped launch the American Majority Tea Party group which trains right-wing candidates to run for office. He sat on the Board of Directors and was the Chairman of Club for Growth Wisconsin, which ran divisive ads in support of Governor Scott Walker's radical overhaul of collective bargaining rights for Wisconsin workers. 
O'Keefe was also co-founder of the Campaign for Primary Accountability, a super PAC funding opposition to incumbent members of Congress. CPA does not have a partisan alliance. Rather it spends millions of dollars funding attack ads against any incumbent member of Congress.
O'Keefe helped found and is a board member of Citizens for Self-Governance, an organization dedicated to supporting grassroots movements and citizen involvement in politics.
O'Keefe is a director of the Cato Institute, an libertarian think tank focused on promoting limited government and individual liberties. He also helped found the Center for Competitive Politics, a legal organization that criticizes campaign finance regulations, taxpayer-financed political campaigns, as well as provides pro bono legal services for lawsuits questioning the constitutionality of election statutes.
- Board of Directors, Citizens in Charge, an Initiative and Referendum advocacy group.
- President, Legislation Education Action Drive, a pro-voucher PAC
- Longtime Libertarian Party activist, along with his wife, Leslie Graves (formerly known as Leslie Keys), and reportedly aligned with Ed Crane through her ties to Update newsletter
- Lucy Burns Institute, official sponsor of Ballotpedia and Judgepedia. His wife is president and the organization receives funds from SAM
- Also connected to "Rachel's Vineyard," an "abortion recovery" group, through his wife, who has been involved in managing the group's publicity 
- Author of book that argues for term limits (entitled Who Rules America: The People versus the Political Class)
Articles and resources
- ↑ Mary Bottari, Heart of Darkness: Criminal Investigation of WI Recall $, prwatch. org, Nov. 25, 2013
- ↑ Eric O'Keefe, About Eric, personal website, accessed Nov. 25, 2013
- ↑ 3.0 3.1 Alex Brant-Zawadzki and Dawn Teo, Anatomy of the Tea Party Movement: Sam Adams Alliance, Huffington Post, Dec. 11, 2009
- ↑ 4.0 4.1 Wisconsin Political Speech Raid, Wall Street Journal, Nov. 18, 2013
- ↑ 5.0 5.1 Marc Fisher, Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker’s recall: Big money fuels small-government fight, Washington Post, Mar 25, 2012
- ↑ Paul Kane, One super PAC takes aim at incumbents of any party, Washington Post, Mar. 7, 2012
- ↑ About Citizens for Self Governance / Mission, organization website, accessed Nov. 25, 2013
- ↑ Health Care Compact Alliance website, "About Us" page, accessed Apr. 12, 2011.
- ↑ About the Center for Competitive Politics, organization website, accessed Nov. 25, 2013
- ↑ 10.0 10.1 10.2 [Sara Jerving, http://www.prwatch.org/news/2012/11/11791/lucy-burns-institute-publishers-ballotpedia-judgepedia-and-wikifoia-and-her-right "Lucy Burns Institute (Publishers of Ballotpedia and Judgepedia) and Her Right-Wing Bedfellows"]
- ↑ The Libertarian Forum. Volume XVI, Number 6, July 1982. "Double Victory for Agression", from "Ludwig von Mise Institute", organizational website, accessed November 2012
Related SourceWatch articles
|This article is a stub. You can help by expanding it.|