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In February 2013, Move America Forward announced an ambitious fundraising goal. The charity, launched in part by one of the most prominent figures in the Tea Party movement, had adopted the 800 Marines in a battalion fighting in Afghanistan and wanted to send them all care packages.
"For some troops, these care packages are the only mail they will receive all year," the group said in one email solicitation.
The charity later described the fundraising drive as a rousing success: In less than five weeks, all 800 Marines in a 1st Marine Division battalion nicknamed Geronimo were sent care packages and notes in Afghanistan, it claimed.
Move America Forward calls itself the nation’s “largest grassroots pro-troop organization,” and has recruited a bevy of Republican luminaries, including former Presidents George H.W. Bush and George W. Bush and former Vice President Dick Cheney, to support its efforts.
Yet an examination of its fundraising appeals, tax records and other documents shows that Move America Forward has repeatedly misled donors and inflated its charitable accomplishments, while funneling millions of dollars in revenue to the men behind the group and their political consulting firms.
Russo is better known for helping to form the Our Country Deserves Better PAC, also known as the Tea Party Express, one of the largest Tea Party groups in the country. Consultants from his Sacramento-based firm, Russo, Marsh and Associates, also set up two other PACs, the Move America Forward Freedom PAC and the Conservative Campaign Committee, to aid conservative causes and candidates.
Russo and his associates have previously drawn attention for lavishing funds raised through the committees on themselves, using this money on an Alaskan cruise and fancy hotels as well as paying themselves huge consulting fees…According to its five most recent tax returns, Move America Forward paid out more than $2.3 million to Russo or Russo, Marsh and Associates for services including “program management and advertising.” That’s about 30 percent of the charity’s overall expenditures over that time.
Charities that accept tax-deductible donations, such as Move America Forward, are prohibited by law from using their donations to fund partisan activities.
Perhaps the IRS did have good cause to audit these tea party groups?
The 50 worst charities in America devote less than 4 percent of donations raised to direct cash aid. Some charities give even less.
America's 50 worst charities rake in nearly $1 billion
originally posted by: Grimpachi
a reply to: Irishhaf
You know what I call the position you just described???
A common sense conservative. I think that is a great position to have.
Here’s a brief look at each of the criminal cases that have been filed, which prosecutors built with help from the Chicago offices of the U.S. Postal Inspection Service and the Internal Revenue Service, as well as from the Illinois Secretary of State’s Office’s inspector general