Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-FL) made his largest-ever political contribution to a mysterious nonprofit organization on the day that Donald Trump's second impeachment trial began.
The Florida Republican gave $100,000 to "Right Direction America," a 501(c)4 "dark money" group set up by Trump ally Chris Christie to rally support during the former president's first impeachment trial, and a Gaetz campaign spokesperson told The Daily Beast the organization supports Sarah Huckabee Sanders in her campaign for Arkansas governor.
"We support the mission of Right Direction America," the spokesperson said.
But there's no public record that RDA supports Sanders for governor, and the group hasn't been active at all since August 2020 and hasn't received donations from any other political groups besides Gaetz's.
RDA spent about $35,000 on Facebook ads between December 2019 and February 2020, but then gave $75,000 to a super PAC supporting losing GOP House candidate Matt Mowers in August 2020 and released some digital ads in February targeting Democratic candidates in some Senate races, although Christie left the group on Dec. 31.
"When you see a webpage like that, that has nothing — no press clips, no projects, no events, no contact information, no address, nothing to identify it as a group with an office where people go to work, or produce actual work — the first question is what do they exist to do?" said Robert Maguire, director of research and nonprofit law expert at Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington. "How are they validating their nonprofit status?"