Who's Funding 'No Labels'? Pro-GOP Billionaires Opposed to Democracy

Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) leaves the Senate chamber with Sen. Kyrsten Sinema (D-Ariz.) following a vote on November 3, 2021 in Washington, D.C.

(Photo: Kent Nishimura / Los Angeles Times via Getty Images)

Who's Funding 'No Labels'? Pro-GOP Billionaires Opposed to Democracy

"At the end of the day, these billionaires and large corporations are deeply invested in maintaining the status quo and opposing Democrats' agenda for working people."

A video released Monday by the pro-worker media organization More Perfect Union delves into the funders behind the dark money group No Labels, which has grown its nationwide influence in recent months as it promises to back candidates in the 2024 elections who will give voters a break from "the angriest voices dominating our politics" and make "commonsense progress."

Founded in 2009, No Labels has for more than a decade peddled the familiar notion that the majority of Americans are political centrists, despite numerous polls showing that people in the U.S. broadly support progressive policy proposals such as Medicare for All, higher taxes for the wealthiest Americans, and universal childcare.

While claiming to represent the interests of most voters, No Labels' mission statement suggests that those ideas are embraced only by "the extreme."

More Perfect Union's investigation into who has poured money into the organization shows how No Labels has depended heavily on corporations and billionaires who benefit from sidelining popular proposals aimed at helping working people.

The group "followed a money trail," said reporter Andrew Rivera, "to discover a deeper story about who is behind No Labels and what's really in it for them."

No Labels has raised $70 million in support of putting third party candidates on election ballots in 2024, including U.S. Sen. Kyrsten Sinema (I-Ariz.), who announced earlier this year that she was leaving the Democratic Party to become an Independent.

A number of No Labels' biggest donors in recent years also gave the maximum contribution to Sinema, particularly showering the right-wing senator with donations after she refused to support President Joe Biden's signature domestic legislation, the Build Back Better Act, in 2021.

Louis Bacon, billionaire CEO of hedge fund Moore Capital Management, gave $1 million each to No Labels and the Republican Party after donating the maximum allowable contribution to Sinema. Nelson Peltz, a major backer of former Republican President Donald Trump and a billionaire investor, gave $900,000 to two No Labels political action committees and also maxed out his donations to Sinema.

The director of No Labels called on its donors—who also include private equity executive Stephen Schwarzman of Blackstone and former 20th Century Fox CEO James Murdoch—to donate heavily to Sinema after she helped block the Build Back Better Act.

The group was highly motivated to reward lawmakers for helping to defeat Build Back Better, which included broadly popular proposals such as universal childcare.

"You would think that no labels would be all in on something that so united the country… except that it would have been paid for by raising taxes on the wealthiest Americans," said Rivera. "At the end of the day, these billionaires and large corporations are deeply invested in maintaining the status quo and opposing Democrats' agenda for working people."

One observer said that More Perfect Union's probe into No Labels explains why, when confronted with a group claiming not to stand for any particular political viewpoint, one should "check the money."

"A political organization that claims to have no ideology," added podcast host Michael Hobbes, "is going to be a right-wing op every single time."

Join Us: News for people demanding a better world

Common Dreams is powered by optimists who believe in the power of informed and engaged citizens to ignite and enact change to make the world a better place.

We're hundreds of thousands strong, but every single supporter makes the difference.

Your contribution supports this bold media model—free, independent, and dedicated to reporting the facts every day. Stand with us in the fight for economic equality, social justice, human rights, and a more sustainable future. As a people-powered nonprofit news outlet, we cover the issues the corporate media never will. Join with us today!

Our work is licensed under Creative Commons (CC BY-NC-ND 3.0). Feel free to republish and share widely.