FreedomWorks, a far-right activist group and super PAC, has been the subject of considerable controversy in recent months. As the Tea Party organization struggles through an ugly, internal staff shake-up, including the ouster of former House Majority Leader Dick Armey, Mother Jones’ David Corn has uncovered all kinds of ugly details about FreedomWorks’ antics.
But nothing quite as ugly as this.
An internal investigation of FreedomWorks—the prominent conservative advocacy group and super-PAC—has focused on presidentMatt Kibbe’s management of the organization, his use of its resources, and a controversial book deal he signed, according to former FreedomWorks officials who have met with the private lawyers conducting the probe.
One potential topic for the inquiry is a promotional video produced last year under the supervision of Adam Brandon, executive vice president of the group and a Kibbe loyalist. The video included a scene in which a female intern wearing a panda suit simulates performing oral sex on Hillary Clinton.
Apparently, just last summer, FreedomWorks was preparing to host a conference and created a promotional video for the event. Borrowing a scene from “The Shining,” the video reportedly showed Brandon waking from a nap, walking down hallways, and finding a woman in a panda suit on her knees, with her head in the lap of another woman pretending to be then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.
This is not, incidentally, conjecture or rumor. Though the video was ultimately never aired at the conference, a FreedomWorks staffer confirmed to Corn that the video was created, and even Armey said he was “shocked at the ugly and bad taste,” though the staffers who made it remain with the organization.
Ed Kilgore added, “[Y[ou do have to wonder what other strange incidents will come out with respect to an organization so loosely run that it’s dealing with multiple investigations despite a relatively brief existence.”
I shudder to think how much worse it might get for the Tea Party group.