Citizens United ROI


While this Los Angeles Times article focuses more on the departure of Sen. Russ Feingold and what that means for the campaign finance reform community it also contains this little tidbit from a top member of American Crossroads, the conservative Super PAC created after the Citizens United ruling:

“We operate like a hedge fund,” said Steven Law, a former aide to Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) and president of American Crossroads, a nonprofit group that funds political ads. “We look for opportunities where we can invest and make a difference.”

Obviously hedge funds wind up with a return on investments, as do their investors. This may simply be the ideological return on investment that comes with the territory, but, since Citizens United obliterated barriers for corporations donating directly to groups promising a return on investment, it is hard to argue that the “persons” of TRT Holdings or Mr. American Financial Group are simply seeking ideological outcomes rather than investment returns that directly effect their bottom lines. Meanwhile, there are countless other donors seeking a return on investment who remain unknown due to the proliferation of politically active groups that do not disclose their donors.