Breitbart, liberal activist cooperated on GOP primary disruptions: report

A liberal activist and organizer collaborated with the right-wing news site Breitbart on coverage of him interrupting GOP presidential primary candidates, according to a new report.

Aaron Black teamed with the pro-Donald TrumpDonald John TrumpMinneapolis erupts for third night, as protests spread, Trump vows retaliation Stocks open mixed ahead of Trump briefing on China The island that can save America MORE outlet by alerting them to stunts, sharing raw video footage and orchestrating coverage, Politico reported on Monday.

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“He worked directly with Breitbart’s political team on the ground in the primary states to sabotage Marco RubioMarco Antonio RubioTrump administration designates B of PPP funds for community lenders The Memo: Trump's Scarborough tweets unsettle his allies House passes bill that would sanction Chinese officials over Xinjiang camps MORE and Ted CruzRafael (Ted) Edward CruzOn The Money: Trump signs order targeting social media firms' legal protections | 2M more Americans file new jobless claims, pushing total past 40M | White House to forgo summer economic forecast amid COVID-19, breaking precedent Trump signs order targeting social media firms' legal protections Overnight Defense: Trump ends sanctions waivers for Iran nuclear projects | Top Dems says State working on new Saudi arms sale | 34-year-old Army reservist ID'd as third military COVID-19 death MORE and elect Trump as nominee of the party,” a source with direct knowledge of the arrangement told Politico.

“[Black] was coordinating with [Breitbart’s] top staff to rabble rouse against Rubio at rallies,” the source said, citing various disruptions during the Florida senator's presidential campaign events.

Politico’s source said Black coordinated with Breitbart journalists via email, phone and even in-person meetings.

Black is an associate with the liberal-leaning Democracy Partners super PAC, it said, and is also a former Occupy Wall Street organizer.

Politico added Black has since conducted interviews with Breitbart and appeared on the outlet’s radio programs.

“Aaron Black reached out to Breitbart and then we covered this and multiple other stories on our website and on our radio show on Sirius XM Patriot Channel 125,” Breitbart editor-in-chief Alex Marlow told Politico in a statement Monday. “Breitbart News Network is proud to work with sources from across the political spectrum to cover important and breaking news stories so that we may bring the most informative reporting to our readers.”

"Some Democracy Partners staff worked with groups that gave voice to the majority of Americans left out of the extreme conservative agenda of the Republican Party," Democracy Partners said Tuesday in a statement to The Hill.

"The statement that Aaron Black, an Associate with our firm, 'coordinated' with Brietbart News, is incorrect," Democracy Partners added.

“In order to engage as much media coverage as possible, Black disseminated to media outlets information about the whereabouts of demonstrations and rapid response events,” the firm added.

“The coalition demonstrated against all seventeen of the Republican candidates. We engaged the media from across the political spectrum. When we organized events aimed at a Trump opponent, Breitbart was more than happy to spread the word. When we organized events against Mr. Trump, Breitbart amplified the Trump Foundation-funded con artist James O’Keefe, who attacked our firm and coalition.”

Politico said Black was the man dressed as a robot who memorably disrupted Rubio during the GOP presidential primary earlier this year.

Footage emerged in February, for example, of Rubio’s supporters tussling with Black while he was wearing the costume in New Hampshire.

Black resurfaced earlier this month, Politico added, during videos released by conservative activist James O’Keefe’s Project Veritas.

Veritas began releasing undercover footage earlier this month of Democratic operatives discussing how to instigate violence at Trump’s events. 

The latest footage from that group, released Monday, shows former Democracy Partners executive Robert Creamer saying Democratic nominee Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonTop Democratic pollster advised Biden campaign to pick Warren as VP Longtime Democratic pollster: Warren 'obvious solution' for Biden's VP pick How Obama just endorsed Trump MORE asked that Trump be followed by a person in a Donald Duck costume on the trail to hound him for “ducking” the release of his tax returns, a possible violation of election law.

Politico said Black details helping organize demonstrations that forced Trump to cancel a rally in Chicago last March.

Breitbart Chairman Steve Bannon, meanwhile, became Trump’s campaign CEO in August after taking a leave of absence from the conservative site.

This report was updated on Oct. 25 at 10:56 a.m.