At a Philadelphia press conference Friday, Republican Party of Pennsylvania Chairman Val DiGiorgio announced he has called on Pennsylvania Attorney General Josh Shapiro and US Attorney William McSwain to investigate liberal dark money organization PA Alliance Action.
According to a news report this week, PA Alliance Action is the main contributor to Pennsylvania Fund for Change, another liberal dark money group that has been found to have lied in mailers and advertisements.
Last week, a Chester County judge required Pennsylvania Fund for Change to correct a mailer that contained blatant lies about Rep. Warren Kampf. In addition, several of Pennsylvania Fund for Change’s television ads have been pulled for containing falsehoods about Republican candidates in the Philadelphia suburbs.
As cited in the news report, $1.4 million—or 56 cents of every dollar—of Pennsylvania Fund for Change’s resources came from PA Alliance Action, a self-proclaimed 501(c)(4) social welfare organization whose main purpose is “to promote progressive values.”
According to the IRS, 501(c)(4) organizations are not allowed to have political purposes as their primary purpose and “The promotion of social welfare does not include direct or indirect participation or intervention in political campaigns on behalf of or in opposition to any candidate for public office.”
“From what we know about PA Alliance Action—and their affiliation with Pennsylvania Fund for Change—their main job is ‘to promote progressive values’ through political campaigns,” said Chairman DiGiorgio.
“In order to do a service to a community that has been repeatedly lied to by these organizations, it is proper—from what we know about these groups—to have more light brought to bear on them and determine, what, if any wrongdoing might be occurring with how they are operating.”
Rep. Alex Charlton (R-Chester), who was subject to one of the false television advertisements run by Pennsylvania Fund for Change echoed the need for accountability.
“I’ve had over half a million dollars in largely untraceable money spent against me on a local State House of Representatives seat,” Rep. Charlton said.
“Voters deserve to know who is funding these attacks and why. They are trading in lies and rumors, as is evidenced by the court ruling in Chester County. My campaign also took action, forcing Pennsylvania Fund for Change to take down their original television ad because it contained false information about my voting record in the legislature. I wasn’t even a member of the legislature when the vote occurred. This group is playing fast and loose with the facts, and when voters don’t know who is paying for it, there’s really no public accountability and no incentive for them to follow the rules.”
A copy of the letter Chairman DiGiorgio sent to Attorney General Shapiro and US Attorney McSwain can be found HERE.