The Free Press, Mankato, MN

State, national news

March 15, 2013

Man who shot Romney's "47 percent" video outed

(Continued)

ST. PAUL —

Prouty was fired, and the case was dismissed after mediation, court records said.

In 2005, while working for an auto dealership, Prouty and two co-workers were honored for saving the life of a woman trapped underwater in her vehicle after it plunged into a canal along Interstate 75. The Weston City Commission resolution said Prouty dived into the water, cut the woman out of her seat belt and kept diving back in after noticing a child safety seat, although there was no child in the car.

Prouty was joined on Schultz's show by Charles Kernaghan, an international labor rights activist and the director of the Institute for Global Labour and Human Rights, who has become a friend.

The labor activist produced a report in late September, titled "Betting Against American Workers" that used information from Prouty's video to attempt to tie Romney to poor labor practices in China. Prouty contacted Kernaghan after he saw the report online and the two struck up a friendship, although Prouty remained anonymous.

"We talked on the phone and were similarly passionate" about the treatment of workers, Kernaghan said. The two men attended Obama's second inauguration together in January.

James Carter IV, a former researcher for Corn who now operates his own research firm, shed more light in a telephone interview Thursday on how the 47 percent video was made public. Carter, who is former president Jimmy Carter's grandson, said Prouty had anonymously posted a muddied clip of Romney at the same fundraiser that he found especially galling. Romney was speaking about a visit to a factory in China during his days at Bain Capital.

The clip did not gain traction online, but Carter — who describes himself as an opposition researcher — had been scouring the Web for videos of Romney with the hope of finding something that he might be able to use against Republicans. He saw Prouty's clip, which had been posted under the pseudonym Anne Onymous670. Carter noticed that he was being followed on Twitter by a person using the same pseudonym and struck up a conversation.

"He followed me first, and I sent him a direct message. It was a mutual," Carter said.

Prouty told Schultz that he connected with Carter after reading a story by Corn about an investment that Bain Capital made in a Chinese firm that Carter had helped research.

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