Political Fundraising Frauds And Scams, PART II: The Conservatives

(Except nobody was alerted…)

An intrinsic problem with members of a party that extols Capitalism is that so many  have a fondness for making money that often overwhelms their ethics alarms, assuming they have any….and many don’t.

In a brave and responsible article posted to day, National Review writer Jim Geraghty , lays out a devastating indictment. He writes in part,

“Why is the conservative movement not as effective as its supporters want it to be? Because day after day, year after year, little old ladies get called on the phone or emailed or receive letters in the mail telling them that the future of the country is at stake and that if they don’t make a donation to groups that might as well be named Make Telemarketers Wealthy Again right now, the country will go to hell in a handbasket. Those little old ladies get out their checkbooks and give what they can spare, convinced that they’re making a difference and helping make the world a better place. What they’re doing is ensuring that the guys running these PACs can enjoy a more luxurious lifestyle. Meanwhile, conservative candidates lose, kicking the dirt after primary day or the general election, convinced that if they had just had another $100,000 for get-out-the-vote operations, they might have come out on top.”

In other words, not only are many conservatives dishonest fundraisers, their unethical methods don’t even help conservative candidates get elected. and in fact harm their chances by diverting money that might have made a decisive difference in their campaigns.

Look at some of the examples he cites:

  • In  2013, Conservative StrikeForce PAC raised $2.2 million to support Ken Cuccinelli’s campaign for governor in Virginia. Court filings and FEC records showed that the PAC only contributed $10,000 to the campaign
  •  In 2014, Politico found that 33 political action committees that claimed to be affiliated with the Tea Party raised $43 million  primarily from small donors, butspent only $3 million on ads and contributions to the candidates mentioned in the appeals, while spending to $39.5 million on “operating expenses,” including $6 million to firms owned or managed by the individuals who ran the PACs.
  • RightWingNews reviewed (in 2015) the financial filings of 21 prominent conservative PACs and found that the bottom ten groups at the bottom of raised $54.3 million but only paid out $3.6 million to help get Republicans elected.
  •  Roger Stone. President Trump’s pal,  founded the Committee to Restore America’s Greatness in 2016. It raised $587,000 and spent a pathetic $16,000 on independent expenditures supporting the Trump campaign.
  • Also during the 2016 campaign, Great America PAC raised $28.6 million from eager conservative and Republican donors. The PAC  donated $30,125 to federal candidates.
  • In 2018, the same PAC raised $8.3 million from donors, and donated donated $31,840 to federal candidates.
  • A PAC for  Milwaukee County Sheriff David Clarke’s  bid for U.S.  raised $2 million,  even though Clarke never ran or announced his candidacy.
  • Fake PACs run by William and Robert Tierney from 2014 to 2018 raised  $23 million from donors. Only $109,000 went to candidates.
  • Tea Party Majority Fund raised $1.67 million for the 2018 elections, and donated just $35,000 to federal candidates.
  • David Bossie’s group, Presidential Coalition,  raised $18.5 million in 2017 and 2018 to support state and local candidates to support the Trump agenda. Only $425,442, or 3 percent, went to direct political activity.

Funny…this reminds me of the Clinton Foundation!

Read the whole thing. It appears that a lot of those devoted conservative patriots are more devoted to lining their own pockets than they are to winning elections, controlling the House, and protecting American values, institutions and principles.

The author writes,

“There are a lot of self-proclaimed watchdogs will find it easier and more convenient to bark at whatever talking head said something about Trump on Morning Joe that day rather than point out that former allies of the president are using his name to raise money and line their own pockets, diverting funds away from efforts that would actually help the president enact his agenda.’

Conservatives aren’t bad because they are conservative, as the Left would have us believe. However, far too many conservatives are bad because they have the ethics of jackals, con artists, robber barons, pick-pockets and Ponzi scheme practitioners.

8 thoughts on “Political Fundraising Frauds And Scams, PART II: The Conservatives

  1. I wish this surprised me. I get so tired of fielding telescammers for relatives who get on sucker-lists. Recordings get hung up on, people who will not leave their scripts get laughed at (no, my 75 yr old mother has NO school loans to need relief and her Windows is not expiring like her yogurt) and more polite callers I may talk to. Both sides of the aisle feel safe in scamming the donors, as the smaller donors aren’t really expecting a direct return for their money. It’s probably the safest scam there is, outside a wacky religion or hopeless cause.

  2. I will take issue with the claim these PACs are operated by Conservatives. Calling yourself a conservative is no more compelling than calling yourself Santa Claus .

    It is extremely difficult to know who is calling as well as their track record. I tell them each time I will only contribute to candidates I CHOOSE. Why should I contribute to a group who may not direct my contribution to those that support my positions.

    It was our former Speaker of the House, Paul Ryan, that reinforced this thinking. For years he was heralded as this great policy wonk, steeped in the minutia of many of the issues facing the American people. He proved to me that he was simply trying to maintain the status quo. He made not have been lining his pockets but I do believe his stature was elevated by many of these pacs.

    I say screw them all. Only the candidates should get donations.

      • Point taken. I do think however neither are principled conservatives such that they truly believe in what might be considered conservative values; neither is Bill Kristol nor Donald Trump. They have hitched their wagons to a cause they believe will help them make a living. David Gergen is a classic example of how politico’s will shift to get close to power.

        We need to keep in mind that between the Right and the Left lies a continuum. Everyone falls somewhere along that line. I worry less about those that find a point and stick to it than those who move along the continuum to be closer to the current power structure.

  3. This is news to me. I saw it here first. Thank you for these posts. I need to get out more, of course, but I too only direct my issues, support and contributions directly to the candidates or office holders.

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