Americans for Prosperity (AFP) is a 501(c)(4) group. This special tax status allows the organization to hide its donors from the public. But this also means it is prohibited by law from engaging in political activites. Founded with the support of the Koch brothers, AFP ran more than $30 million of 2012 election attack ads targeting President Obama.
Just HOW political were these ads? Political enough that the Chair of the Repubican Party released a statement accompanying the announcement of these ads. From Americans For Prosperity Ad Blasts Obama For Hope And Change Failure,
“Four years ago Americans entrusted that President Obama would truly bring ‘Hope and Change’ to Washington,” RNC Chair Reince Priebus said in a statement accompanying the new ads. “It is clear that he has failed to live up to his promises and has left our country with a mountain of debt and a health care bill that has cost the taxpayers trillions.”
A bit more on this from Tobacco giant funded conservative nonprofits, bt the Center for Public Integrity,
These groups, which obtain their nonprofit status because they say their “primary purpose” is not political activity, are generally under no legal obligation to detail their funding sources. Super PACs and other recognized political committees, by contrast, must report the names of their contributors who give more than $200 and the amounts they give.
Yet during the 2012 election cycle, various social welfare nonprofit organizations, emboldened by the U.S. Supreme Court’s Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission decision in January 2010, spent more than $250 million to promote or attack federal political candidates, according to the nonpartisan Center for Responsive Politics. The source of most of that money remains a mystery.
This is blatant, flat-out, unquestionable illegal campaign spending.
Maybe THIS has something to do with why the right is drumming up a false “scandal” claiming that the IRS “targeted” conservative groups. This is about scaring the IRS away from doing its job.