You Are Subsidizing Billionaires' Ads

In this update: 1. Taxpayers subsidizing “free speech” for billionaires 2. Holding WDC’s database in your hands 3. Madison, Racine shows of documentary to benefit WDC 4. Dissension in the ranks You Are Subsidizing Billionaires’ Ads

Email date: 6/3/14

In this update:
1. Taxpayers subsidizing “free speech” for billionaires
2. Holding WDC’s database in your hands
3. Madison, Racine shows of documentary to benefit WDC
4. Dissension in the ranks

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Taxpayers subsidizing “free speech” for billionaires
Last week the Democracy Campaign sent a letter to the IRS urging the agency to look into new election-year ads supporting Governor Scott Walker sponsored by the charitable arm of Americans for Prosperity, the right-wing group established and funded by the billionaire brothers Charles and David Koch. Because the Americans for Prosperity Foundation is a tax-exempt 501(c)(3) social welfare organization, the donations paying for nearly $900,000 worth of ads backing Walker’s policies are tax deductible. Under federal law, C3 groups are not supposed to use any resources to participate or intervene in political campaigns. As noted last week on our blog, the letter WDC just sent to the IRS follows up on complaints we filed in 2012 against AFPF and two other C3 groups that did election-related advertising that year.

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Holding WDC’s database in your hands
Want to follow the money in Wisconsin politics using your phone or tablet? An app for that is coming soon. The moment the mobile app being developed for the Wisconsin Democracy Campaign’s searchable donor database is available, you’ll be the first to know.

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Madison, Racine shows of documentary to benefit WDC
The Racine group Community for Change has organized a screening of the film “Citizen Koch” for Thursday, June 12 with proceeds benefiting the Democracy Campaign. WDC is then presenting the movie in Madison on Sunday, June 15 and will receive proceeds from ticket sales of that show as well. Democracy Campaign director Mike McCabe will be on hand at both shows to participate in post-film discussions.

If you do not live in either the Racine or Madison areas, you can organize a screening of the film in your community using tugg.com.

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Dissension in the ranks
The Republican dark money group Wisconsin Club for Growth is getting creative in its efforts to derail a criminal investigation at the center of which the organization finds itself. Club for Growth is at odds with Governor Walker and enlisted the editorial board of the Wall Street Journal to take Walker to task after the governor’s attorney evidently started discussing a possible settlement with the special prosecutor. Then the group sued the state Government Accountability Board, claiming the agency lacks the authority to assist prosecutors in the case.