From Mother Jones:
FreedomWorks, the national conservative group that helped launch the tea party movement, sells itself as a genuine grassroots operation, and for years it has battled accusations of “astroturfing”—posing as a populist organization while doing the bidding of big-money donors. Yet internal documents obtained by Mother Jones show that FreedomWorks has indeed become dependent on wealthy individual donors to finance its growing operation.
According to a 52-page report prepared by FreedomWorks’ top brass for a board of directors meeting held in mid-December at the Virginia office of Sands Capital Management, an investment firm run by FreedomWorks board member Frank Sands, the entire FreedomWorks organization—its 501(c)(3) and (c)(4) nonprofit arms and its super-PAC—raised nearly $41 million through mid-December. Of that total, $33 million—or 81 percent of its 2012 fundraising—came in the form of “major gifts,” the type of big donations coveted by nonprofits and super-PACs
Nothing says grassroots movement like multimillion dollar checks from plutocrats. At least $1 million of that money went to Glenn Beck to promote FreedomWorks on his show which is a pretty sad commentary on the lack of interest for the Tea Party because Beck and Limbaugh (who also received funds from FreedomWorks) are actually paid to cover right wing politics. They need to cover the Tea Party, those are their listeners. Why would they need an additional monetary incentive to do their job? Or is FreedomWorks fading from relevance?
Photo by Gage Skidmore under Creative Commons license