By Blake Neff, DCNF
An activist who bragged about disrupting multiple Donald Trump campaign events in a recent Project Veritas video was on Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton’s campaign payroll, a search of Federal Election Commission (FEC) records reveals.
In a Veritas video released Monday, filmmaker and provocateur James O’Keefe recounts meeting activist Zulema Rodriguez at the Republican National Convention in Cleveland. In the video, Rodriguez takes credit for violent protests in Chicago that forced Trump to cancel a March rally.
“So, [Aaron Black] and I did the Chicago Trump event where we shut down like all the yeah,” Rodriguez says in the video. Rodriguez also takes credit for an Arizona protest, also in March, that shut down a major highway outside a Trump event.
Notably, a search of FEC records reveals that Rodriguez was paid by the Clinton campaign shortly before she disrupted the Chicago rally. The campaign paid her $1,610.34 as a “payroll” expense, and also gave her a $30 payment that is described only as “phone.”
The payments are both dated Feb. 29, 2016, less than two weeks before the violence in Chicago. Those are the only payments Rodriguez has ever received from the Clinton campaign. It’s not immediately clear what the payment was for, and it’s also unclear whether Rodriguez was really behind the agitation in Chicago or if she was simply making an empty boast.
In the months afterward, Rodriguez was paid handsomely by other political operations. She received a $1,108.97 travel reimbursement from MoveOn.org Political Action in May, and in June she was paid a whopping $17,500 by Stand Up For Ohio PAC as a “political consulting fee.” Stand Up For Ohio PAC is itself heavily funded by MoveOn.
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