The American Prospect: Karl Rove’s “Dark Money” Machine Is Now Tax-Exempt. Here’s Why That Matters
The ruling drew fire from such watchdog groups as the Campaign Legal Center and Democracy 21, which have lodged multiple complaints against Crossroads GPS with the IRS, the Federal Election Commission, and even the Department of Justice’s Tax Division. The complaints allege that Crossroads GPS is spending millions on direct campaign activities while masquerading as a benign nonprofit.
“It is a dangerous victory for those in Congress who have relentlessly bullied the IRS into refusing to enforce the laws limiting the political advocacy of tax exempt organizations,” Larry Noble, general counsel for the Campaign Legal Center, said in a statement.
“By allowing an organization like Crossroads GPS to spend in our elections secretly and with impunity, the IRS has all but guaranteed that similar ‘dark money’ groups will proliferate,” warned Noble.
At the same time, the Campaign Legal Center and Public Citizen are suing the FEC for dismissing the two groups’ complaint alleging that Crossroads GPS should be defined as a political committee. The FEC’s general counsel concluded that Rove’s group was likely in violation of campaign-finance laws, but the commission deadlocked along party lines and took no enforcement action on those findings. That lawsuit is still working its way through the courts.
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