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Trump alumni assume tank joins forces with America First Works darkish cash group – Information by Automobilnews.eu

Trump alumni assume tank joins forces with America First Works darkish cash group


Former U.S. President Donald Trump reacts at his first post-presidency marketing campaign rally on the Lorain County Fairgrounds in Wellington, Ohio, U.S., June 26, 2021.

Shannon Stapleton | Reuters

A darkish cash group that after promoted former President Donald Trump’s insurance policies is becoming a member of forces with a assume tank headed partly by former key members of his administration, together with Larry Kudlow and Linda McMahon.

America First Works launched after Trump’s 2016 victory and was beforehand referred to as America First Insurance policies. It was reformed and adjusted its title after Trump misplaced his bid for reelection.

Now the group is working straight with one other freshly fashioned nonprofit group, assume tank America First Coverage Institute, in keeping with Ashley Hayek, a Trump marketing campaign veteran who has a management function at America First Works and can also be chief engagement officer for the assume tank.

Different leaders on the AFPI assume tank embrace:

  • CEO Brooke Rollins, who was as soon as the director of home coverage in Trump’s White Home
  • Board chair McMahon, a former CEO of World Wrestling Leisure who served as Trump’s head of the Small Enterprise Administration
  • Board vice chair Kudlow, who was director of the Nationwide Financial Council beneath Trump

Neither America First Works nor America First Coverage Institute is required by legislation to publicly disclose their donors. America First Works has given cash to a bunch that claimed to have helped write Georgia’s voting legislation and one other group that’s pushing to amend the Structure to additional impose limits on the federal authorities’s powers.

The teams’ collaboration comes as Trump considers working for the White Home once more in 2024. They might present one other platform for Trump and his allies to maintain his “America First” agenda within the highlight. Members of the assume tank have been transferring forward with publicly selling these pro-Trump insurance policies by way of op-eds, interviews and pre-recorded movies.

Whereas it is unclear how a lot money AFPI has readily available, Axios reported that it has a primary 12 months finances of $20 million. It was launched earlier this 12 months. America First Works completed 2020 with simply over $7 million in belongings, in keeping with their annual 990 tax submitting.

America First Works is a 501(c)(4) nonprofit, which by legislation can interact in some partisan politics, whereas America First Coverage Institute is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit, which by legislation ought to be nonpartisan. The group claims on its web site that it’s nonpartisan regardless of being aligned with the previous president.

Hayek informed CNBC that America First Works was fashioned “as a brand new group to work carefully with AFPI” and as “an extension of AFPI, it’s completely targeted on advancing coverage in any respect ranges of presidency, together with to advertise financial alternative, college alternative, inexpensive healthcare, foster care reform, election integrity, and legal justice reform.”

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Trump himself has brazenly supported the America First Coverage Institute.

The previous president spoke throughout a gala for the nonprofit earlier this month at his personal Mar-a-Lago resort in Florida. Whereas he promoted accomplishments from his time in workplace, some members of the group cheered “Let’s go Brandon,” a slogan utilized by pro-Trump conservatives to imply “F***okay Joe Biden,” in keeping with a video of his remarks posted by the group. Trump additionally took goal at Senate Minority Chief Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., calling him an “outdated crow.”

The America First Coverage Institute says its analysis focuses on analyzing the insurance policies that Trump and his allies termed as “America First.” They’ve pushed again on parts of President Joe Biden’s agenda, together with with how his administration has dealt with unlawful border crossings and a Covid vaccine mandate for personal companies. The group not too long ago printed a video that takes goal at Biden’s decide for comptroller of the forex, Saule Omarova, who has been topic to assaults on her upbringing in addition to critiques of her coverage concepts.

The assume tanks coverage priorities embrace legal justice reforms, combating again towards Huge Tech corporations and decreasing taxes. The group additionally lists as their priorities as “election integrity” and “essential race principle” as areas of concern.

The group has supported voting legal guidelines not too long ago handed in Texas that critics say prohibit entry to the poll field. In op-eds posted on AFPI’s web site, leaders of the assume tank have known as on mother and father to struggle again towards the teachings of essential race principle, a university and post-graduate tutorial that examines the impression of racism on American establishments and insurance policies. It grew to become a hot-button situation that was utilized by Republican Glenn Youngkin in his profitable gubernatorial marketing campaign in Virginia.

A rising affect community

Virtually half of the almost $40 million in grants from America First Works final 12 months went to its affiliated tremendous PAC, America First Motion, in keeping with AFW’s most up-to-date 990 submitting. America First Works additionally donated to different conservative organizations that proceed to wield affect throughout the nation. The submitting was first reported on by the Heart for Public Integrity.

Earlier tax information present that America First Works, previously referred to as America First Insurance policies, by no means doled out this a lot money in a single 12 months. The 990 type reveals that as of the top of 2020, it was additionally chaired by McMahon. Longtime Republican operative Brian O. Walsh is listed because the president of the group.

The nonprofit additionally had a report fundraising 12 months, raking in simply over $50 million, with the shape itemizing prime particular person donations of $5 million. Identical to different darkish cash teams, America First Works will not be required to publicly disclose the names of their donors. MapLight reported that earlier company donors to America First Insurance policies included utilities agency Southern Firm, CVS Well being and Dow Chemical.

Final 12 months, America First Works donated $994,000 to Heritage Motion, a conservative group that works to counter insurance policies typically aligned with the Democratic Social gathering.

Heritage Motion has additionally claimed credit score for serving to create voting legal guidelines that advocates say restrict entry to the poll field. Mom Jones obtained a video exhibiting Jessica Anderson, the chief director of Heritage Motion, talking to donors about how the group helped craft such legal guidelines in Georgia and different states.

“In some circumstances, we truly draft them for them, or we’ve got a sentinel on our behalf give them the mannequin laws so it has that grassroots, from-the-bottom-up kind of vibe,” Anderson is seen saying on the recording.

Heritage Motion’s web site takes goal on the “For the Individuals Act,”  often known as H.R. 1, which was launched by Democrats and handed within the Home. Democrats say the laws would assist folks have higher entry to the poll field. It’s unlikely to go within the Senate since Democrats shouldn’t have sufficient votes to beat a Republican filibuster. The location encompasses a script for anybody excited about volunteering to name up their Home or Senate consultant to push again towards the Democratic invoice.

America First Works additionally gave $250,000 to a bunch known as the Conference of States Motion, which has been pushing state lawmakers to convey collectively a conference to amend the U.S. Structure to restrict the federal government’s powers.

“Washington, D.C., is damaged. The federal authorities is spending this nation into the bottom, seizing energy from the states and taking liberty from the folks. It is time for we the folks to take a stand towards tyranny with a coordinated, nationwide effort to curb the unrestrained and rising energy of the federal authorities,” Conference of States Motion’s pocket information says. The group’s web site says that over a dozen states have handed Conference of State resolutions that would result in an Article V conference.

The New American Populist, a nonprofit group that claims to wish to “empower residents and encourage better involvement within the authorities course of,” acquired simply over $1 million from America First Works in 2020.

Jeff Webb, the group’s president, has additionally funded two Republican tremendous PACs, together with one with an similar title because the nonprofit he runs, in keeping with knowledge from the nonpartisan Heart for Responsive Politics. Webb is the founding father of cheerleading firm Varsity Spirit and is the president of the Worldwide Cheer Union.

Webb, of Tennessee, has ties to Trump ally Charlie Kirk and his personal group, Turning Level USA, a nonprofit that tries to advertise conservative voices on highschool and school campuses.

Webb was a speaker at Turning Level’s Scholar Motion Summit earlier this 12 months. His speech took goal at progressives, saying they wish to alter capitalism.

“The left’s actual aim is to reshape American capitalism. To maneuver us to a extra socialist mannequin. One the place the American financial engine runs extra like a European system. They achieve this within the title of fairness,” Webb informed the group on the time.

Webb joined Kirk on the Turning Level USA’s podcast in March to debate, amongst different issues, how populism is gaining energy within the Republican Social gathering publish Trump’s loss.

“I feel there is no doubt that the populist motion inside the social gathering is profitable. And it is irreversible,” Webb stated then.

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Trump alumni assume tank joins forces with America First Works darkish cash group – Information by Automobilnews.eu
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