Media Hits

Best of CRC Media Hits for September 2020

We’re excited around the Capital Research Center office because all the hard work by our investigative researchers continues to really pay off. Because of the quality of our work, the media is forced to take it and put it out into the world as important and relevant to current events.

We know that because September marks the most media hits Capital Research Center has had in over a year, driven in part by an Associated Press story quoting CRC president Scott Walter on charities helping pay for elections and Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg’s financial role in that effort. Thousands of independent news outlets ran the story, which led to thousands of media hits as it was picked up by outlets around the country.

But truth be told, even without that story, we still had more unique media hits than we’ve seen in some time as the work we’re doing on leftist “dark money,” unions, vote-by-mail shenanigans, philanthropic political bias, and much more has made CRC an important part of the debate over these issues. And we have no plans to stop.

Below is a selection of some of our best hits in September 2020.


’Not Plan A’: Charities Are Stepping Up to Pay for Elections
Associated Press, Nick Riccardi, September 16, 2020

Conservatives note the Democratic origins of CTCL and that its donations have predominantly been in areas where Democrats depend on votes. The group has announced an upcoming series of grants to rural areas but hasn’t provided specifics.

“I cannot believe people of such partisanship will put their partisanship aside while taking hundreds of millions of dollars and distributing it to election offices,” said Scott Walter, head of the conservative Capital Research Center, which monitors nonprofits.

Still, Walter acknowledged, conservative-leaning nonprofits — and the GOP Senate — have not stepped in to help elections officials.

“Honestly, I wish the right would do it, not only so the election would be more balanced but so we could have an honest debate about whether (charities) should do this,” Walter said.

Zuckerberg Pours $250 Million into Group Funding Voting Drives in Wisconsin Democratic Strongholds
Just The News, Daniel Payne, September 5, 2020

But election funds “should be appropriated by the state legislature and spent consistent with state laws,” he continued, “as the Constitution specifically delegates the task of determining the time, place and manner of elections to the state legislatures.”

“If Mr. Zuckerberg wants that money spent appropriately, he can just give it to the state,” Kline added.

Though the Center for Tech and Civic Life styles itself as nonpartisan, the conservative watchdog group InfluenceWatch identifies it as a “center-left election reform advocacy group.”

Two of its executives — Whitney May and Donny Bridges — both used to work at the progressive New Organizing Institute in Washington, D.C. Its founder, Tiana Epps-Johnson, meanwhile, was the election administration director for that group.

How a $600 Million ‘Dark Money’ Monster Helped Leftists Gain Power
The Daily Signal, Hayden Ludwig (Op-Ed), September 11, 2020

Watchdog group Americans for Public Trust recently blew the whistle on the “news” website Courier Newsroom, which was operating as a front for ACRONYM, a Democratic-aligned group, to target 2020 swing states. It’s a win for transparency, but the font of “dark money” for leftists is bigger—$600 million bigger.

Courier Newsroom is a creation of Arabella Advisors, a little-known liberal behemoth and consultancy responsible for a hidden river of cash that poured out $600 million in 2018. Arabella is the left’s best-kept secret that proves something money-in-politics reporters have failed to notice: nonprofits—not the parties—drive our politics.

Left-Wing Dark Money Groups to ‘Carpet-Bomb’ 2020 Election, Report Warns
Fox News, Adam Shaw, September 11, 2020

“If 2018 is any indicator, we should expect to see the Left carpet-bomb the 2020 presidential election with buckets of anonymous cash, while complaining about the evils of ‘dark money’ the entire time,” the report from conservative watchdog Capital Research Center says.

The CRC first reported last year on what it described as a shadowy network of liberal nonprofits under the banner of Washington-based Arabella Advisors — afloat on more than a half-billion dollars and run by former Clinton administration appointee Eric Kessler.

CRC’s latest report, released Friday, found that between 2006 and 2018, the Arabella network reported revenues of $2.4 billion and nearly $1.9 billion in expenditures. In 2018 alone, the network brought in $635 million in revenue, after having brought in $582 million a year earlier.

The Billionaire Backers of the Insurrection
American Greatness, Julie Kelly, September 14, 2020

The same agitators on the Left and NeverTrump Right who’ve stoked nonstop political upheaval over the past four years will exploit our current instability to throw the election to the Democrats.

But this is more than the far-fetched hallucinations of political outcasts. The mayhem they’ve been war-gaming will be heavily funded by a number of Trump-hating billionaires, and those people have no intention of losing out on their investment.

The mostly behind-the-scenes attempt between Election Day and Inauguration Day to prevent Donald Trump from taking office the first time—one that miraculously failed despite help from the media and the most powerful government agencies in the world—will go public in 2020. And instead of help from James Comey, Jim Clapper, or John Brennan, the 2020 version will be bolstered by the likes of George Soros, Tom Steyer, Pierre Omidyar, a member of the Rupert Murdoch family, and Big Tech titans among others.

Far Left Racism in Government Is Nothing New
Washington Times, Jake Klein (Op-Ed), September 16, 2020

The White House responded by canceling the training outright Wednesday. And it’s a good thing because, although marketed to the public as having the goal of combating racism, Critical Race Theory, rooted in Black nationalist ideology, redefines “racism” and arguably has more in common philosophically with White supremacy than Martin Luther King Jr.’s style of anti-racism.

The Trump administration took the right step in banning federal funding of these views, which founder of Critical Race Theory Derrick Bell argued “must acknowledge [race] and move on to adopt policies based on what I call ‘Racial Realism.’” For what it’s worth, most prominent White nationalists also argue for race realism so this is not a new problem being nipped in the bud. Even before the field of Critical Race Theory was formally founded, the same damaging ideas it teaches infected the U.S. military.

The Left’s New Radicals and the Big Money Behind Them
Legal Insurrection, Scott Walter, September 25, 2020

A former Clinton flunkie may not be what springs to mind when one thinks of the radical Left, but it’s time to correct that. These radical groups are bolstered by big, left-wing “dark money.” During the Kavanaugh hearing, Demand Justice condemned the Supreme Court nominee before his name was even announced. In fact, they openly “worked to galvanize opposition against any Republican nomination for Kennedy’s vacated seat.”

Kavanaugh’s dubious accuser Christine Blasey-Ford was represented by for-profit PR firm SKDKnickerbocker who received $7 million in 2017 from the Sixteen Thirty Fund, another Arabella group. Protestors who confronted former Senator Jeff Flake (R-AZ) in an elevator and interrupted hearings during the chaos belonged to the Center for Popular Democracy, which takes money from New Venture Fund, a sister group of Sixteen Thirty Fund. The four groups Arabella manages, including Sixteen Thirty Fund and the New Venture Fund, brought in more than $1.6 billion between 2013 and 2017. A new report details how Arabella, since 2006, “has pumped a stunning $2.4 billion into politics with nary a peep from ‘dark money’ hawks such as Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) while liberal groups bemoan the threat of conservative political spending to the republic.”

Left Wing Dark Money Sweeping the 2020 Campaign
OANN, Hayden Ludwig (Guest), September 18, 2020

Michael Bloomberg and secretive left-wing dark money figures are pouring hundreds of millions of dollars into the 2020 presidential election. One America’s Richard Pollock sat down with an investigative researcher at the Capital Research Center to discuss this troubling issue.

Could Union Malingering Cause a People’s PATCO?
Washington Examiner, Mike Watson, September 15, 2020

And to be clear: Research shows that teachers union power, not the rate of coronavirus infection or deaths, is closely associated with whether classrooms will open or remain locked down. By one model, “A 10% increase in union power is associated with a 1.3 percentage-point lower probability of reopening in person.”

But while political leaders have alternately dithered, capitulated, or pandered to the might of the National Education Association and American Federation of Teachers, parents have taken their own action. According to one poll, nearly 40% of parents are not enrolling their children in the school they would have attended but for the pandemic. Anecdotal stories suggest that children are being moved into private schools or into independent home-school arrangements, and teachers union-aligned governments are passing legislation to prevent student and parent independence from affecting school system budgets.

Left-Wing ‘Dark Money’ — Ignored by the Press — Could Tip Several Elections
Issues & Insights, Sarah Lee (Op-Ed), September 28, 2020

“Liberals are the loudest ‘dark money’ hawks in Congress and the media complaining about money influencing elections rarely seem to notice the scads of ‘dark money’ helping Democrats,” Walter recently said.

He’s referring specifically to Arabella Advisors, which operates as a for-profit company based in Washington, D.C., and runs a nonprofit network that poured out hundreds of millions of dollars in 2018 with virtually no criticism from the money-in-politics crowd.

Much of that money was spent on ads in key states using phony groups like Arizonans United for Health Care, Floridians for a Fair Shake, and North Carolinians for a Fair Economy. The left-leaning media writes regularly on the horrors of conservative “dark money,” yet managed to miss most of the Arabella story and has reported on just one part of the vast network.

Sarah Lee

Sarah Lee was born and raised in Atlanta, Ga., but found herself drawn to Washington, DC, the birthplace of her mother, after completing a master’s degree in public administration from…
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