Alex Haber 
Member since Aug 7, 2015


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Recent Comments

Re: “Updated: Dark Money Group Paid for Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf's Inauguration Festivities

Darwin,

I agree with you in principle, but I think it's unnecessarily inflammatory to label Made in Oakland a "shadowy", "dark money group." I think we should advocate for more transparency and less private money in politics without throwing the baby out with the bathwater. There are good arguments for the anonymity of c4 donors, and lots of legitimate and important uses of c4s, regardless of whether I agree with their agendas.

11 likes, 5 dislikes
Posted by Alex Haber on 08/07/2015 at 1:16 PM

Re: “Updated: Dark Money Group Paid for Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf's Inauguration Festivities

I'm not a huge a fan of Mayor Schaaf, but this is a silly thing to get too worked up about. 501(c)4s aren't "dark money groups," they're an important part of the non-profit/advocacy infrastructure. The ACLU is a 501(c)4, for example. C4s are important because they allow for coordination with elected officials and advocacy on specific pieces of legislation, things which charities (that is most other non-profits) aren't able to take on. Maybe this c4 was set up to fund the inauguration, but that makes sense: it allows a single place to aggregate all the funding needed for the event. Donors to c4s don't get a tax deduction, so there's no tax benefit to them. The only benefits I suppose would be not having to be publicly disclosed, and being able to donate more than the legal limit for campaign fundraising. But since the funds can only be used for limited activities, and clearly were used that way, what's the big deal? Also, $83,000 is pocket change compared to all the other ways that people funnel money into politics and avoid taxes.

15 likes, 4 dislikes
Posted by Alex Haber on 08/07/2015 at 10:59 AM

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