ONE OF THE DEFINING ISSUES OF THIS CYCLE -- "Secret donors fuel Crossroads ads," by Kenneth P. Vogel: "A massive $4.2 million ad buy announced Tuesday by American Crossroads and Crossroads GPS ... highlights a trend that has shaped the midterm campaigns and could have far-reaching consequences in American politics: the shift to anonymous political activity. ... The buy brings the total ad spending of Crossroads groups ... to about $18 million. ... [T]he Campaign Legal Center, a nonprofit that pushes to limit the role of money in politics, along with another nonprofit, Democracy21, asked the Internal Revenue Service on Tuesday to investigate whether ... Crossroads GPS ... is abusing its tax-exempt status ...
"The letter is part of a growing drumbeat by advocates for stricter campaign finance rules ... to compel the IRS and the Federal Election Commission to tamp down the explosion of political spending, primarily by Republican-allied outside groups, including Crossroads GPS, that are registered under Section 501(c)(4) of the tax code. That section allows so-called social welfare nonprofit organizations to keep their donors' identities secret but requires the groups to limit their campaign-related activity to less than half of their total spending. Last week, Sen. Max Baucus (D-Mont.) sent a letter to the IRS suggesting that Crossroads GPS and two other GOP-leaning 501(c)(4) groups with links to GPS - American Action Network and Americans for Job Security - might be violating the requirements of their tax-exempt status. Jonathan Collegio, a spokesman for the Crossroads groups, dismissed the Campaign Legal Center complaint as ... 'a baseless complaint, filed by a partisan group that fundraises off of the baseless complaints they file.'" http://bit.ly/a6s0aC
COLLEGIO E-MAILS, with the subject line 'interestingly': 'Despite the left's coordinated ... attacks, we received more new 'likes' on facebook today than on any day in our history.'
SIREN -- PLAYBOOK FACTS OF LIFE: These calls for investigation are making some potential corporate donors nervous. One of the city's best connected Republicans e-mailed us: "We are telling all of our clients, do not give a cent unless you accept the possibility that one day your contribution will be well be public. ... i do not think you will see many blue chip companies, this is more for the wealthy." [emphasis added]
Wednesday, October 6, 2010
Amercian Crossroads: Dems Deter Corporate Contributions
Mike Allen reports: