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October 09, 2006 10:46 PM UTC

527s, sign in please!

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  • by: Karl Maher

It’s bad enough that voters have to go to the polls without knowing who financed October’s political hit jobs. But given the early voting phenomenon, a lot of people will vote not even knowing the 527s’ third-quarter contributors. Q3 closed a week ago Saturday, yet just one Colorado entity has its contribution and expenditure reports up at irs.gov.
 

And, of course, forms submitted to the IRS on paper never make it to the searchable database. Clear Peak Colorado, for example, shows up in the basic IRS search, but remains invisible to the advanced search engine, along with Tim Gill’s and Pat Stryker’s contributions. Sigh.

But we can update the 527 file with a few interesting disclosures:

— The one entity filing so far is the United Food & Commercial Workers Union 7R Local PAC, which dropped close to $300,000 on state politics: four grand a pop for several legislative candidates, and $10,000 contributions to AG candidate Fern O’Brien and a couple of 527s, Colorado Voter Project and Main Street Colorado.

— Main Street Colorado is an interesting group. From its second-quarter report, you’d almost think the contributors have it confused with the Republican Main Street Partnership. Which it most definitely is not. MSC is pulling in mostly corporate contributions: Trade associations, United Airlines, Citigroup, Sprint, Coors, Philip Morris ($10k in tobacco money, BTW). Yet the biggest chunk of change comes from the Democratic Legislative Campaign Committee, which, its website says, “has a long-term proven strategy to put Democrats in control of state legislative seats and chambers and put a stop to Republican gerrymandering.” Most of MSC’s Q2 expenditures went to Democratic polling, consulting and printing firms in the Washington, DC area.

— If there were any further doubt about MSC’s intentions, look no further than its custodian, the ubiquitous Julie Wells. Using the advance IRS search, we find that she’s also the custodian for 527s ThisMatters, Colorado Voter Project, Coalition for a Better Colorado, Citizens for Colorado, and Alliance for Colorado’s Families.

But not even this impressive CV tells Julie’s whole story. For remember, friends, that FORMS SUBMITTED ON PAPER ARE NOT SEARCHABLE! But go look at Clear Peak Colorado’s paper, and Julie’s fingerprints are all over it. She should really open up an office in Fort Collins.

Cross-posted at Can’t See the Center.

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