Tag Archive for: ArabellaAdvisors

Democratic Activists Are Dishing Out Millions To Keep CRT, Gender Theory In Schools

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An education nonprofit that labels itself as non-partisan is pouring millions of dollars into political groups ahead of school board elections, according to Politico.

The Campaign for Our Shared Future, which works for “equitable, anti-racist programs, practices and policies” in K-12 education, is targeting school board elections in red states including Arizona, Florida, Louisiana, and Michigan, with a plan to reach at least 15 states, according to Politico. Executive Director Dr. Heather Harding said the group has raised at least $9 million for voter education efforts and plans to raise more. (RELATED: ‘We Are Being Censored’: Co-Founder Of Conservative Moms Group Blasts Twitter)

The campaign branches for Campaign For Our Shared Future were registered by two groups run by Arabella Advisors, a group known for pushing “Democratic dark money nonprofit groups,” Politico reported. New Venture Fund, which centers its work in “race, equity, diversity and inclusion” and the Sixteen Thirty Fund, a group that works for “economic equity and racial justice,” are backing Campaign For Our Shared Future.

“After two years of being accused of a fake ‘astroturf’ movement, imagine the surprise of first-time activists and average parents from across the country to see that Arabella Advisors – a massive, dark money-funded network – has poured eight figures into jumping on the education bandwagon,” Parents Defending Education President Nicole Neily told the Daily Caller News Foundation. “It’s unsurprising that democratic donors are panicked about how their allies have mismanaged this issue – but no amount of money can make up for the fact that at the end of the day, they truly believe that they know better than we do how to raise our children… and that is a losing message, period.”

Harding’s work history includes the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and Teach For America, which values a “shared commitment to Diversity, Equity, and Inclusiveness.”

Campaign For Our Shared Future currently works with Our Turn, a youth activism group that focuses on social justice issues like immigration reform, Politico reported.

The education group provides a “voting guide” for school board elections in several red states and provides information on what makes a “good school board candidate” including someone who is fairly involved in the school, according to the website. “Extremists are causing chaos” in school board meetings, the group says, providing an example of a Florida man who challenged the school’s equity statement and deemed it “indoctrination.”

The group also called parents who opposed mask mandates in a Virginia school “conspiracy theorists,” the website shows.

Next, the group plans to target Michigan, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin but has not revealed in what ways, and will work with Florida Student Power, a group of students focused on LGBTQ, racial, and women reproductive injustices, Politico reported.

“It’s clear to me that the battle continues to grow,” Harding told the outlet. “We think that presidential politics will continue to keep schools sort of in their crosshairs. We don’t find that productive to the actual work of learning, so we do hope that as more donors join us we can be broader, and go deeper so that public schools continue to be a backbone of democracy.”

Campaign For Our Shared Future did not immediately respond to the DCNF’s request for comment.

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This article was published by the Daily Caller News Foundation and is reproduced with permission.

Soft on Crime? Here’s Jackson’s Record on Sex Offenders and Other Criminals

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Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson once expressed concern about a “climate of fear, hatred, and revenge” surrounding sex offenders.

Jackson later opposed the confinement conditions of a Taliban leader suspected of running a terrorist cell.

The judge also routinely ruled against the Trump administration on immigration enforcement cases, as detailed here.

Now, as President Joe Biden’s Supreme Court nominee, Jackson faces questions about her legal career and record on crime when her Senate confirmation hearing convenes Monday.

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., this week noted that during a crime wave, Jackson is a favorite among interest groups that are soft on crime. 

“Amid all this, the soft-on-crime brigade is squarely in Judge Jackson’s corner,” McConnell said Tuesday in a Senate floor speech. “They wanted her above anyone else on the short list. And they specifically cite her experience defending criminals and her work on the Sentencing Commission as key qualifications.”

The liberal nonprofit group Demand Justice promoted Jackson as one of its top picks on a list of potential Supreme Court nominees for Biden. Arabella Advisors, a major bankroller of left-of-center causes, sponsored the launch of Demand Justice.

Since June, Jackson has been a judge on the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals. From 2013 to 2021, she was a judge for the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia. From 2003 to 2005, she was an assistant special counsel for the Sentencing Commission, then a public defender until 2007.

President Barack Obama nominated Jackson, in private practice at the time, to serve on the Sentencing Commission itself starting in 2009. She became vice chairwoman.

‘Alarming Pattern’ on Sex Offenders

Sen. Josh Hawley, R-Mo., a member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, tweeted Wednesday that he sees “an alarming pattern when it comes to Judge Jackson’s treatment of sex offenders, especially those preying on children.”

While on the commission, Hawley noted, Jackson said a “less serious child pornography offender” is motivated by “the use of technology.” She also said that some of those who possess child porn “are in this for either the collection, or the people who are loners and find status in their participation in the community.”

Hawley’s tweets referred to seven separate cases in which Jackson ruled.

“On the federal bench, Judge Jackson put her troubling views into action. In every single child porn case for which we can find records, Judge Jackson deviated from the federal sentencing guidelines in favor of child porn offenders,” Hawley wrote on Twitter.

Jackson authored 585 rulings while on the D.C. District Court, but has written only two opinions as a D.C. Circuit judge.

The lower court cases Hawley highlighted include:

  • U.S. v. Hawkins, where sentencing guidelines called for up to 10 years in prison for a man convicted of possession of multiple images of child pornography. Jackson sentenced him to three months.
  • U.S. v. Stewart, where sentencing guidelines called for 97 to 121 months in prison for a man convicted of possessing thousands of images of child porn and attempting to travel across state lines to abuse a 9-year-old girl. Jackson sentenced him to 57 months.
  • U.S. v. Cooper, where the guidelines called for 151 to 188 months for a sex offender convicted of posting 600 images and videos online. Jackson sentenced him to 60 months, the lowest sentence allowed, according to Hawley.
  • U.S. v. Chazin, where the guidelines called for 78 to 97 months for possession of child porn. Jackson’s sentence  was 28 months.
  • U.S. v. Downs, where the guidelines called for 70 to 87 months for someone convicted of posting sexual images of children, including at least one under age 5. Jackson handed down 60 months.
  • U.S. v. Sears, where the guidelines called for 97 to 121 months for a perpetrator convicted of distributing 102 child porn videos as well as photos of his 10-year-old daughter. Jackson gave him 60 months. (Jackson, however, later denied him compassionate release in 2020 when he said diabetes mellitus and asthma placed him at greater risk of serious complications from COVID-19, according to a Congressional Research Service report.)
  • U.S. v. Savage, where the guidelines called for 46 to 57 months for a man convicted of traveling with the intent to engage in illicit sexual conduct and also transporting child porn. Jackson sentenced him to 37 months.

White House spokesman Andrew Bates told a Washington Post reporter that Hawley used selective information.

“This is toxic and weakly presented misinformation that relies on taking cherry-picked elements of her record out of context—and it buckles under the lightest scrutiny,” the Post quoted Bates as saying.

‘Advocating Lighter Sentencing’

Democrats support the Jackson nomination and technically control the 100-member Senate by holding 48 seats, enjoying the support of two independents, and having Vice President Kamala Harris available to cast a tie-breaking vote.

Shortly after Biden nominated Jackson, the watchdog group American Accountability Foundation first flagged her 1996 Harvard Law Review article arguing that the justice system was unfair to sex offenders.

For a lifetime appointment to the Supreme Court, Jackson’s lifetime of legal views should be evaluated by senators, said Matt Buckham, a founder of the group.

“Maybe the article was written in the past about how the law is unfair to sexual predators and sex offenders, but she has had a long legal career advocating for lighter sentencing for crimes across the board,” Buckham told The Daily Signal.

Jackson’s Harvard Law Review article is titled “Prevention Versus Punishment: Toward a Principled Distinction in the Restraint on Released Sex Offenders.”

“In the current climate of fear, hatred, and revenge associated with the release of convicted sex criminals, courts must be especially atten­tive to legislative enactments that ‘use … public health and safety rhetoric to justify procedures that are, in essence, punishment and detention,’” Jackson wrote.

Jackson went on to compare laws on sex offender registries to the precedent set by the Supreme Court in the case of Kennedy v. Mendoza-Martinez, where it struck down laws denying national citizenship to draft dodgers as unconstitutionally punitive.

In her article, Jackson wrote:

Judges should abandon the prevention/punishment analyses that rely on legislative intent, that routinely apply the Kennedy factors, and that assess the ‘excessiveness’ of a sex offender statute’s punitive effects in favor of a more principled approach to characterization. Although ‘[a precise] analytical solution is almost impossible to construct,’ this note suggests that such a principled approach in­volves assessing the impact of sex offender statutes and deeming the laws ‘punitive’ to the extent that they operate to deprive sex criminals of a legal right in a manner that primarily has retributive or general­ deterrent effects.

The American Accountability Foundation’s Buckham said Jackson’s record on crime demonstrates that she isn’t qualified to serve on the high court.

“She has a record of being an activist for a social justice agenda, not an arbiter of justice,” Buckham said. “If more Americans were aware she wants the law to go lighter on sex offenders, they would be horrified. Biden had a lot of candidates to draw from and should go back to the drawing board.”

Jackson’s record on such crimes is a fair issue to raise, said Carrie Severino, president of the Judicial Crisis Network, a conservative legal nonprofit.

“To minimize child pornography is certainly not a positive for a Supreme Court nominee,” Severino told The Daily Signal.

If the issue is limited to opposing a sex offender registry, as outlined in Jackson’s law review article, liberal judges have opposed this before, noted Curt Levey, president of the Committee for Justice, another conservative nonprofit.

In a 2003 case, Justices John Paul Stevens, Ruth Bader Ginsburg, and Stephen Breyer—the justice whom Jackson hopes to replace—were in a 6-3 minority disputing the constitutionality of Alaska’s sex offender registry. The same year, the high court unanimously upheld a Connecticut sex offender registry.

Defending Terrorism Suspects

Jackson’s broader record on crime will be a significant issue in her Senate confirmation hearing as well, Severino said, including the judge’s time as a public defender.

Jackson was a lawyer for terrorism suspects held at the U.S. detention facility at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, including a Taliban officer believed to be a leader of a terrorist cell. In defending the Taliban leader, Khiali-Gul, Jackson accused the U.S. government of engaging in torture tactics.

Objecting to Gul’s confinement conditions, Jackson wrote:

Many of the most egregious interrogation techniques used in the Abu Ghraib detention center and other detention facilities in Iraq—such as the use of aggressive dogs to intimidate detainees, sexual humiliation, stress positions, and sensory deprivation—were pioneered at Guantanamo.

In the D.C. Federal Public Defender’s Office, Jackson primarily represented clients in appeals in firearms, tax evasion, and fraud cases. Legal experts note that senior public defenders have discretion about cases they are assigned.

“Obviously, the duty of a public defender is to advocate on behalf of their client as best as possible, but you can’t make just any argument,” Severino said. “Arguments can’t go beyond what is fair and reasonable.”

Severino said Jackson made “nitpicky” arguments as a public defender in two 2007 cases, one involving illegal firearms possession and the other drug possession.

In the firearms case, Jackson argued on appeal that the defendant couldn’t be charged with two separate firearms charges at the same time.

In the drug case, police had pursued a driver who made an illegal turn, then found drugs in plain sight in his vehicle, Severino said. Jackson argued that the driver shouldn’t have been pulled over, saying the turn wasn’t illegal if the police were able to pursue him.

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This article was published by The Daily Signal and is reproduced with permission.

Democrats [Tried to Use] the Same 2020 Election Shenanigans to Overtake Virginia This Year

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So how do Democrats plan to ensure they win Virginia’s elections, from the governorship to its U.S. Senate seat? By using the same tactics they used in the 2020 contest nationwide.

Editor’s note: The 2021 general election was a disaster for Democrats in Virginia, with Republicans winning the elections for governor, lieutenant governor, and attorney general—and probably taking the Virginia House of Delegates. The Democrats appear to have significantly increased turnout of Democratic voters in Democratic strongholds, such as Fairfax County (an increase of about 180,000 Democratic voters over the previous gubernatorial election). But it was not enough to carry the day.

Virginia’s hotly contested gubernatorial race is just days away, and with Republican Glenn Youngkin and former Democratic Gov. Terry McAuliffe tied in the polls, the professional left isn’t leaving anything to chance. A McAuliffe defeat is largely considered a bellwether for congressional Democrats in the 2022 midterms.

So how do Democrats plan to ensure a McAuliffe win and a subsequent retention of power in the state and U.S. Senate? By using the same tactic they used in the 2020 national contest: profligate mail-in voting and fake grassroots get-out-the-vote efforts funding by philanthropies and wealthy leftists, a strategy revealed through Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg’s gift to the Center for Tech and Civic Life (CTCL).

And it’s a smart strategy. Joe Biden voters were twice as likely as Donald Trump voters to vote by mail in 2020, for example; and we know the effect of Zuckerberg’s millions on the 2020 election. The Capital Research Center specializes in exposing the activists behind these efforts. Here’s what we’ve discovered about the funding and activists behind them.

Getting Out the Vote for Democrats

Vote Forward is one of the get-out-the-vote (GOTV) groups swamping Virginians with a letter practically begging them to vote early. Here’s my copy:

Vote Forward is ostensibly nonpartisan—until you look at its original website from 2018, which reads “Flip the House Blue: Send letters to unlikely voters.” Elsewhere, the group admits it was founded to send “get-out-the-vote” mailers to “traditionally underrepresented communities,” code for Democrat-leaning constituencies.

The New York Times praised Vote Forward’s goal of boosting Democrat turnout just one week before the 2020 election. An old FAQ states that many of its campaigns “typically target low-propensity voters who we believe are likely to vote for Democrats when they do cast a ballot.”

In 2020, that target was 10 million voters. To make that happen, Vote Forward sued the U.S. Postal Service, accusing Postmaster General Louis DeJoy—a Trump nominee—of “undermin[ing] USPS’s ability to ensure the on-time delivery of mail ballots” in the 2020 election. The details of their settlement remain unclear, but USPS agreed to deliver mail-in ballots in time for Georgia’s January special election, the result of which ultimately handed Democrats control of the U.S. Senate.

Like many organizations that present themselves as more interested in voting than election outcomes, Vote Forward is part of the Left’s Voting Machine: A massive web of interconnected GOTV nonprofits commanding tens of millions of dollars, mostly gifted by ultra-wealthy institutions like the Ford, Gates, and Rockefeller Foundations.

We’ve traced more than $600,000 flowing to Vote Forward from the Hopewell Fund, part of a $731 million “dark money” network run by the consultancy Arabella Advisors in Washington, DC. After studying this network for years, it’s become clear to us that wherever Arabella is involved, one is sure to find the left’s top operatives as well.

For example, Vote Forward’s board includes Ezra Reese, a partner at Perkins Coie and its Marc Elias-led spin-off (the Elias Law Group) “focused on electing Democrats, supporting voting rights, and helping progressives make change”—a fact you won’t find advertised on the “nonpartisan” group’s website. Perkins Coie is the left’s law firm of choice. Elias was general counsel to Hillary Clinton’s 2016 presidential campaign and a partisan operative whose past dealings include George Soros-funded efforts to abolish voter ID laws.

A Flood of Mail-In Ballots

In September, I reported on a new wave of 2 million applications for Virginians to register for absentee ballots in 2021. These applications weren’t sent out by state or local elections officials, but by politically active nonprofits: the Voter Participation Center and Center for Voter Information (collectively “the center”). An internal memo details the spots they planned to cover most aggressively, many of which parallel Biden’s performance in 2020.

The center explicitly targeted the “New American Majority,” another code for likely Democratic voters that they define as “young people, people of color and unmarried women.” That bloc contains 73 percent of all unregistered voters nationwide, which is why the left-wing strategists at the Democracy Alliance consider their turnout “central to progressive long-term success.”

The IRS requires all nonprofits be officially nonpartisan in order to be tax exempt. In the center’s case, nonpartisanship comes in the shape of a fig leaf—as liberal journalist Sasha Issenberg explains in his 2012 book, The Victory Lab: The Secret Science of Winning Campaigns: “Even though the group was officially nonpartisan, for tax purposes, there was no secret that the goal of all its efforts was to generate new votes for Democrats” (emphasis added).

The center sent out 15 million vote-by-mail applications in 2020 and registered 4.6 million new voters. Time credits the center’s partisan registration efforts as central to the “shadow campaign that saved the 2020 election” for Biden. No surprise that the center is heavily funded by the Service Employees International Union (SEIU), AFL-CIOSierra ClubLeague of Conservation Voters, and Tides Foundation.

Will Zuck Bucks Continue?

We were among the first to report in-depth on how billionaire Zuckerberg and the little-known Center for Tech and Civic Life (CTCL) spent $350 million to effectively privatize the 2020 election in battleground states, helping turnout for Biden in the name of COVID-19 “relief.”

Overnight, this little nonprofit’s revenues grew by more than 12,000 percent from $2.8 million thanks to Zuckerberg’s cash injection—fueling its “nonpartisan,” “charitable” façade to elections officials and helping Democrat turnout in precisely the spots Biden needed to win the presidency.

Across nine states, our data shows that CTCL’s grants consistently ignored Trump counties in favor of big, Democratic-leaning spots like Philadelphia, Maricopa County, and Houston—all essential to Biden’s victory. In Georgia, for instance, Biden counties were two-and-a-half times more likely to receive CTCL funding than Trump counties.

Virginia received close to $4 million in Zuck Bucks, more than one-third of which went to populous Fairfax County to “support in-person early voting” and “vote by mail.” Fairfax County was Biden’s biggest vote-haul in the state and is the linchpin to McAuliffe’s strategy.

Nearly $970,000 paid for “temporary staffing support” to bolster Fairfax County’s elections agency. That may sound innocuous, but as CTCL expert William Doyle recently wrote at this site, that funding “supported the infiltration of election offices by paid Democratic Party activists.”

[CTCL] funded self-described ‘vote navigators’ in Wisconsin to ‘assist voters, potentially at their front doors, to answer questions, assist in ballot curing … and witness absentee ballot signatures,’ and a temporary staffing agency affiliated with Stacey Abrams called ‘Happy Faces’ counting the votes amidst the election night chaos in Fulton County, Georgia.

Fairfax County applied for an extension to its CTCL grant in January, but ultimately returned its remaining $187,709 in April, spokesman Brian Worthy told me. To his knowledge, the county has not applied for another grant for the 2021 election. That’s a good start, but to save the integrity of our elections, Zuck Bucks need to be banned. No exceptions.

There’s no faster way to destroy what remaining trust Americans have in their elections than by giving them to the highest bidder. Private funding of elections would take us back to the worst of the 19th-century robber barons when rich political machines won elections by buying public officials and intimidating voters. It also presents opportunities for foreign interests to manipulate our politics and undermine American sovereignty.

It’s unknown how much CTCL money remains in Virginia or if the group has continued to make grants here. Neighboring Fairfax City reports $14,175 in CTCL funds leftover for the 2021 election.

CTCL has been surprisingly mum about the ongoing election considering how loudly it advertised open-ended grants to Georgia counties in January. It’s possible that the dozens of exposés, hundreds of critical news articles, flurry of state Zuck Buck bans, and an inquiry from furious congressional Republicans silenced the leftists running CTCL.

Or maybe not. A recent CTCL statement calls lawsuits against its grants program “frivolous” and its funding “equitable,” particularly in small counties with small elections budgets.

Today’s left has cynically embraced Zuck Bucks out of short-term thinking, believing like NPR that “private money from Facebook’s CEO saved the 2020 election.” That’s a losing hand. Americans can see that the same leftists who’ve now embraced plutocracy were just yesterday crying “eat the rich” and “abolish billionaires.” Close to a dozen states have already banned Zuck Bucks and grassroots groups are leading a national movement to audit the 2020 election and save the country.

Leftists believed the country would overlook their desperate indiscretions, claiming—as CTCL does—that Zuckerberg’s unprecedented spending spree somehow made 2020 “the most secure election in U.S. history.” We’ll know even more in December when CTCL releases its IRS Form 990 filing to the public. If coming revelations are anything like observers expect, that claim will age about as well as milk.

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This article was published on November 3, 2021, and is reproduced with permission from Capital Research Center.