Despite President Obama’s call for “special interest” groups to remain uninvolved in upcoming midterm elections and the disparagement of the Tea Party movement and its campaign actions by the Democrats, it seems that double standards do occur. Then again, as often is the case, if it were not for double standards, most of the Left wouldn’t have standards.
Under the seemingly benign name of the America’s Families First Action Fund, this special interest group has spent nearly $1.5 million for advertising against Palin endorsed Congressional candidates in the last two weeks alone. This includes more than $375K against Wisconsin Congressional candidate, Sean Duffy, more than $400K against Florida Congressional candidate, Steve Southerland, nearly half a million dollars against Arizona candidates, Ruth McClung and David Schweikert, and nearly $200K total against Colorado candidate, Scott Tipton, and New Mexico candidate, Steve Pearce.
The bigger story, however, is not the amount of cash invested in bringing down conservative candidates, but the method behind the madness. The America’s Families First Fund is aimed at promoting “progressive issues”. This organization did not file “statement of organization” papers with the Federal Election Committee until August,and their skeleton of a website shows no information regarding its supposed focal points and acts primarily as an additional temporary funnel for liberal dollars to flow through. Its contributions come only from a small cadre of big dollar donors and the International Association of Fire Fighters.
Politico describes this PAC as (emphasis mine), “one of three newly formed Democratic committees not aligned with a union that are swooping in during the final weeks, hoping to stall the Republicans’ momentum”. However, half a million dollars of their donations came from the International Association of Firefighters, which is affiliated with the AFL-CIO. The AFL-CIO is a coalition of labor unions headed by known union “thug”, Richard Trumka. You can put lipstick on union funding, but it’s still thug backed campaign funding.
Some interesting characters have given six figures to this PAC themselves. These donors include Agnus Gund who fought for ” fair elections” by removing “special interest” funding. Ironically, this very issue that Gund fought against is the very issue upheld by the Supreme Court in the Citizens United vs. FEC case allowing organizations like the America’s Family First Fund to operate to oppose candidates. George Marcus and Stephen Silberstein, both big time Democratic donors, gave a combined $350,000 to America’s Families First. Rob McKay, HuffPo blogger and chairman of the Democratic Alliance, contributed $100,000 to this PAC. McKay’s Democratic Alliance is supported by George Soros, supported ACORN, and had a role in the Norm Coleman-Al Franken recount in Minnesota’s 2008 Senate race.
PAC expenditures went toward political consulting groups such as Project New West, whose President has worked for the DNC and NARAL pro-choice America among other Left leaning organizations. They also employed the communication consulting of Winning over Washington led by Ramona Oliver who has prior experience with SEIU and EMILY’s List. Nothing says “America’s Family First” like strategies provided by groups led by individuals proudly supportive of pro-“choice”, pro-thug union groups, right?
The Democrats as a party and the Left as an ideology try to claim to support the “little guy”. However, when their causes are supported in large part by union-backed PACs and wealthy donors, some with nefarious ties, this hardly seems to be the case. The “little guy” that Governor Palin has been referencing in her recent speeches is the kind of person expressing support for the Tea Party movement and Governor Palin’s PAC itself. Although the FEC rules for a 401 (c)4 organization like America’s Families First and a national leadership PAC like SarahPAC differ, recent quarterly reports show a great grassroots support from small donors, even more so than President Obama’s leadership PAC prior to his run for the Presidency. In spite of negative campaigning by corporatistic PACs, the election is ultimately decided by the “little guy” at the ballot box.
You can help positively support these targeted Palin endorsed candidates and others by visiting Organize4Palin.
Big thanks to Stacy for her assistance with research for this post.