The press releases posted here have been submitted by
For further information or to comment on this press release, please contact the organization directly.
Most Popular This Week
- Members of Congress Declare "Immunity" from Insider Trading Probe
- Afraid to Stoke Populist Ire, Obama Abandons 'Inequality' Rhetoric
- NSA 'Bombshell': Agency Spied on Prominent American Citizens
- Unpatriotic US Corporations Becoming Hot Political Issue That Unites Right and Left
- Kneeling in Fenway Park to the Gods of War
Today's Top News
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Dubious Expenditures at Political Action Committees
WASHINGTON - October 5 - Political
action committees are supposed to spend their money helping to elect
like-minded candidates to state and federal offices. But some appear to
be little more than slush funds for their proprietors, a new investigative story by the 20-year-old Center for Public Integrity reveals.
Center journalists Josh Israel, Aaron Mehta, and Gabriel Debenedetti sifted through the public records of 5,200 PACs. While the majority of the groups appear to be spending funds appropriately on their missions, some PACS spend most of their donated budgets on overhead and other questionable items. For example, Black America’s PAC, founded by perpetual presidential candidate Alan Keys, spent barely 1 percent of its $2 million budget since 2007 on supporting state, local, and federal candidates. Ten percent of that money went to paying the group’s president, Alvin Williams. The rest went to fundraising expenses and overhead.
PACs are tax-exempt under Section 527 of the U.S. tax code, though contributions to them are not tax-deductible. Campaign law places virtually no restrictions on how PACs spend money, but their tax-exempt status with the IRS requires that their function be “influencing or attempting to influence the selection, nomination, election, or appointment of any individual” to public office.
That doesn’t seem to be the case at the Committee for a Democratic Future, the PAC run by Rep. Rosa DeLauro, D-Conn.
About two-thirds of the PAC’s spending from 2007 to 2010 ($200,000) went to pay for food and drink for what DeLauro spokeswoman Kaelan Richards termed informal “policy dinners” for the congresswoman, academics, policy experts, and all interested members of the House Democratic Caucus.
The Lyndon LaRouche PAC spent a stunning $13 million since the start of 2007, but just $3,855 (0.03 percent) of it went to political donations. Almost $6 million went to LaRouche Youth LLC, a for-profit led by people affiliated with the PAC, for grassroots lobbying and advocacy. No expenditure details are disclosed. Nearly $500,000 of the PAC’s spending went to “petty cash,” also un-itemized.
Read and link to the Center story, “Political Inaction Committees: How Political Action Committees are Spending Your Donations.”