Who’s that? The biggest spender in this election cycle is the Las Vegas Sands (i.e.casino mogul Sheldon Adelson) who is giving Republicans and conservatives 100 percent of the $56.7 million its pouring into political campaigns. Fie!
Never mind that coming in third, is Tom Steyer‘s total contribution of $50.2 million, all of it going to Democrats and liberals.
Well, you’d expect this kind of influence-buying from greedy, corporate moguls. But I’m talking about a special interest group that tries to pass it self off as doing God’s work: Planned Parenthood, its affiliates and allied groups are spending a combined $50 million to influence the people in Congress who, in 2016, ladled out $ $543 million to the nation’s largest abortion provider.
Let’s repeat that. A special interest group that benefits directly from federal grants and subsidies to the tune of more than $500 million gives some $50 million to the campaigns of selected (i.e. almost all Democrats and liberals) elected officials that decide who gets the money and how much.
If that’s not a conflict of interest, maybe you can educate me about what is. Tell me why that doesn’t violate the political agenda of Democrats and liberals who decry–nay, rant–about judicial decisions that allow campaign donations, especially of this size, to special interest groups. Even though the logic behind those decisions is sound: political donations are considered free speech under the First Amendment.
Here’s some of the mid-term election spending, according to pro-life LiveAction: (Hah, you say. The figures are from a pro-life group so they’re no good. By that measure then, we should give no credence to the pro-choice Guttmacher Institute.)
Planned Parenthood has several PACs that belong to Planned Parenthood affiliates at the state and regional levels while Planned Parenthood’s largest national political organizations include Planned Parenthood Votes, Planned Parenthood Action Fund, and Planned Parenthood Federal PAC:
- Planned Parenthood Votes makes independent expenditures for and against candidates. See the 2017-18 Federal Election Commission report on its Donors and Independent expenditures.
- Planned Parenthood Action Fund makes independent expenditures for and against candidates and funds grassroots organizing and election workers. See the 2017-18 Federal Election Commission report on its Independent expenditures.
- Planned Parenthood Federal PAC contributes directly to candidates’ campaigns. See the 2017-18 Federal Election Commission report on Donors and Campaign contributions.
In addition to March.Vote.Win., Planned Parenthood Votes is partnering with three other groups – Color of Change PAC, Center for Community Change Action, and the Service Employees International Union (SEIU) – in the Win Justice Super PAC to invest a combined $30 million in key state and federal elections.
Not a bad idea, spreading your contributions like this over a range of affiliates and allies to disguise exactly how much you are spending.
The bigger point, though, is if you are going to complain about “dark money” and other big money contributions going to Republicans and conservatives, you should be as outspoken about the same kind of money going to Democrats and liberals.
UPDATE: Democrats excel in harvesting dark money, Washington Times
Forget the blue wave, or even the red wave — this year’s election is really a green wave of cash.
Not only are the midterms setting records for campaign spending, but Democratic challengers also have broken the mold by matching or even exceeding incumbent Republicans in key races, flipping the script on the usual pattern for a party out of power.
Also adding to Democrats’ edge is a flood of “dark money,” which the party decries on the campaign trail but is boosting its prospects in some of the tightest races.