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Tag Archive: 501(c)4

IRS-gate: Picking on the little guys

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As often happens, Washington’s big story of the moment--that the Internal Revenue Service targeted dark money groups that filed for nonprofit status if they had the words "tea party" or "patriot" in their monikers--misses the big point. Of course the IRS should never be used for political purposes; it should apologize for giving an extra scrutiny to groups requesting non-profit status if they appeared to be Tea Party affiliates. Our question is: Why did they pick on the little guys when they’ve got so many larger, more legitimate targets for scrutiny?

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After election, dozens of super PACs shut down

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After an election that saw unprecedented spending from outside groups, more than a hundred super PACs have already hit the self-destruct button. Many of the now-defunct organizations spent more on themselves than they did supporting political candidates.   

Stephen Colbert announced on the Monday edition of his Comedy Central program the demise of his super PAC, Americans for a Better Tomorrow, Tomorrow, Inc., on his Comedy Central show. With Trevor ...

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Latest Dark Money Tallies: $213 million in the general election and counting, 81% on behalf of Republicans; 34 races with $1 million or more

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Back in July, Senate Republicans successfully blocked the DISCLOSE Act, which would have required all organizations spending $10,000 or more to reveal their donors. Now we understand why. Though Nov.1, $213.0 million has been spent by “dark money” groups to influence the 2012 elections. Of that, $172.4 million (81%) has been spent to help Republican candidates, as compared to $35.7 million (19%) to help Democrats. (By “dark money” we mean groups that do not disclose their donors and only are required to disclose their congressional race spending within 60 days of House and Senate elections and their presidential race spending following the national party conventions).

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Controversial Arizona nonprofit drops $1 million against Obama

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In the past week, a GOP-led dark money group from Arizona that had barely spent any money on federal races has dropped more than $1.2 million to oppose President Barack Obama, as well as $60,000 to oppose Utah’s only House Democrat, Jim Matheson.

The nonprofit group, Americans for Responsible Leadership (ARL), organized as a 501(c)4 under the tax code, does not have to disclose its donors under federal law. However, it may be compelled to do so because of a strikingly large $11 million donation to a political organization in California. The state’s Fair ...

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Stealthy effort fuels get out the vote effort–in Israel

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Image of ballot box with backdrop of israeli flagAn assertive bipartisan get-out-the-vote effort known as “IVoteIsrael” and aimed at Americans living in that country appears to have ties to conservative billionaire Ronald S. Lauder, a supporter of Republican causes and of the hawkish Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

A project of Americans for Jerusalem, a charity registered under 501(c)4 of the U.S. tax code, IVoteIsrael is not required to release information about its donors. However, corporate filings in Delaware show that the group lists the same Manhattan address as that used by the Ronald S. Lauder Foundation. Other intriguing connections:

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Put brakes on political nonprofits? Not so fast, taxman says

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Today a federal tax official provided House Ways and Means Committee members some details about how the Internal Revenue Service will review whether the political activities of shadowy nonprofit groups conflict with their exempt status.

The answer: slowly, according to the IRS Deputy Commissioner for Services and Enforcement Steven Miller, one of the witnesses at the hearing.

He said the IRS has decided to consider whether it would issue new guidance to the groups. And if the agency investigates groups, it looks at an entire year's worth of activity before determining whether an organization has violated tax laws, Miller ...

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