American Phoenix Foundation operative may have mis-identified himself

One of the supposed video-gatherers associated with the American Phoenix Foundation — causing a stir among lawmakers and lobbyists — seems to have not been truthful about his identity to lawmakers and reporters.

The man who said his name is John Liam appears really to be Jon Basel, the brother of American Phoenix Foundation CEO Joe Basel.

The social media site Instagram shows the balding, chiseled-jaw and unflappable person known around the Capitol as John Liam, but the site contains photos of the same man identified as Jon Basel, also known by the Instagram handle hugginn_memory.

The site displays Basel/Liam as a mudbug-eating, skateboard-scooting, motorcycle-riding and vest-wearing young man.

The operative was asked this week if his name is truly Jon Basel, but he wouldn’t answer the question.

Here is a photo taken recently at the Capitol, when the man said his name was John Liam.


Now, here are some Instagram pics of Jon Basel.

Screen Shot 2015-05-13 at 10.49.12 AM Screen Shot 2015-05-13 at 10.49.58 AM Screen Shot 2015-05-13 at 10.50.28 AM Screen Shot 2015-05-13 at 10.53.35 AM

Sixteen people from the foundation — presumably including Basel/Liam — have collected 800 hours of video on and off the Capitol grounds of lawmakers and lobbyists behaving badly, a foundation spokesman said recently. The group intends to package the video and release it in the coming weeks and months to show legislators’ hypocrisy as well as other acts of sex, violence and corruption, spokesman John Beria has said.

Author: Tim Eaton

Tim is a reporter on the State Desk at the Austin American-Statesman. He covers the Texas House and several topics, such as immigration, insurance and any other issue that starts with an "i."

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