The GOP: ripping off the elderly to fill its coffers
What does it say about the Republican Party when it takes great care to prey upon the elderly to fill its coffers with bloodsucking sham organizations like the Black Republican PAC (see my exclusive post on how these orgs funnel money to wingnut welfare businesses).
This is not an abstract matter — there are victims of these schemes and they are often seniors on fixed incomes, many with dementia, who take these appeals seriously, often forgetting how much they’ve sent (so they send again), and they get on the speed dials of the GOP leeches who call and fill the mailboxes of these poor people incessantly. I received a letter from one reader who couldn’t believe how deep these predators had their talons in her mom.
Subject: Black Rep Pac
Date: Wed, 3 Sep 2008 11:46:55
From: Susan M
Thank you for your research on the Black Republican Pac. One of the replies to your post said something like: “I wonder how many senior Americans are being taken by this scam?”
Well, my 86-year-old mother is one of them, and I am furious. I went through her check book, and in just three months time, she has contributed to approximately 30 such groups that have preyed upon her dementia, naiveté and desire to be “Christian,” and support what’s “right.” I am attempting to contact every single one of them, but many have no contact info listed, and BAC is one of them, along with “ACU Defeat Hillary,” “Republican Victory Drive,” “To Stop Fairness Doctrine (something to do with Rep Mike Pence, R-IN),” “Conservative Victory 2008,” “Freedom Defense Fund,” “Christian Action Network,” “Coalition to Salute American Heroes,” “WWP Wounded Warrior Project,” ”Bob Barr Leadership Fund,” and the “Freedom Defense Fund.” She seems to be on every wing-nut money-grubbing conservative and Christian group and acronym ever invented. I’m not saying that all of these organizations are bogus, but they are all guilty of taking advantage of the elderly.
If you have information on any of these, or can provide me with any way to stop these types of fundraising appeals, I would appreciate it. When I search the Black Rep Pac, I just find articles about it, no contact info. I have already contacted the DMA, but that hasn’t diminished the piles of junk mail she’s receiving.
Again, many thanks for doing and posting your research, and for any info you can provide. Perhaps your next article for your blog, huffingtonpost.com, and prominent news organizations could be on the scandalous fundraising scams being perpetrated on the elderly?
Overland Park, KS
More below the fold. Huff Post did pick up my original investigation on this, but sadly, few big blogs picked it up, and no mainstream media organizations did either. How many families out there have an elderly relative who is being buried under direct mail garbage, and is giving in over and over to bogus political pleas similar to the Black Republican PAC?
And the experts of ripping off the vulnerable are the College Republicans. In fact in 2004, the College Republican National Committee raised a ton of money by engaging in misleading and very aggressive fundraising that targeted the elderly. How can these guys sleep at night?
Many of the top donors were in their 80s and 90s. The donors wrote checks — sometimes hundreds and, in at least one case, totaling more than $100,000 — to groups with official sounding-names such as “Republican Headquarters 2004,” “Republican Elections Committee” and the “National Republican Campaign Fund.”
But all of those groups, according to the small print on the letters, were simply projects of the College Republicans, who collected all of the checks.
And little of the money went to election efforts.
Of the money spent by the group this year, nearly 90 percent went to direct-mail vendors and postage expenses, according to records filed with the Internal Revenue Service.
Some of the elderly donors, meanwhile, wound up bouncing checks and emptying their bank accounts.
“Direct-mail vendors and postage expenses,” what do you know. In the case of the Black Republican PAC, that’s where all the money went as well — and the companies are usually owned by longtime Beltway insiders and their friends.