Providence, RI – U.S. Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) released the statement below today regarding the Obama Administration’s newly proposed guidance to limit political activity by 501(c)(4) nonprofit organizations:
“Since the Supreme Court opened the floodgates to big money in elections in its disgraceful Citizens United decision, political groups posing as ‘social welfare’ organizations have abused their nonprofit status. They run ads targeting candidates for office and raise millions of dollars in secret donations that evade campaign finance disclosure laws. Some groups appear plainly to have lied to the IRS about their activities – which are supposed to be primarily geared toward ‘social welfare’ – and then hidden behind vague rules to avoid prosecution. Today’s proposed guidance is badly needed, and could ultimately help crack down on the unlimited, secret spending plaguing our elections and corrupting our democracy.”
Senator Whitehouse has long been a leading voice for campaign finance reform in the Senate. Last year he led the fight to pass the DISCLOSE Act, which would have put an end to secretive campaign spending by strengthening disclosure laws for nonprofit 501(c)(4) groups and others.