- A group styling itself as a “nonpartisan” organization strived to assist Democrats in triumphing in elections in 2020, according to a new report by watchdog group Capital Research Center (CRC) exclusively obtained by the Daily Caller News Foundation.
- Despite VRP’s “nonpartisan” status, it has strategically geared its activities towards securing election wins for Democrats by focusing on specific demographics, CRC claims.
- “Encouraging qualified voters to exercise their right to vote is a noble purpose, served by legitimate nonpartisan, nonprofit organizations, and community leaders around the country,” Lawyers Democracy Fund Executive Director Lisa Dixon, who was not involved in CRC’s report, told the DCNF. “But when supposedly nonpartisan organizations conduct get-out-the-vote efforts in a manner that seems designed to benefit one political party, voters are rightly skeptical of how fair and nonpartisan such efforts are.”
A group presenting itself as a “nonpartisan” voter registration organization worked to help Democrats win elections in 2020, according to a new report by conservative watchdog group Capital Research Center (CRC) exclusively obtained by the Daily Caller News Foundation.
The organization, called Voter Registration Project (VRP), was “commissioned” by now-White House Deputy Chief of Staff John Podesta, funded by top left-wing donors and specifically aimed at winning election victories for Democrats, CRC alleges in the report. Although VRP describes itself as “nonpartisan,” it particularly targeted demographics likely to vote for Democrats and hired left-wing consultants, leading to 5.1 million new voter registrations since 2015, according to its website.
“Encouraging qualified voters to exercise their right to vote is a noble purpose, served by legitimate nonpartisan, nonprofit organizations, and community leaders around the country,” Lawyers Democracy Fund Executive Director Lisa Dixon, who was not involved in CRC’s report, told the DCNF. “But when supposedly nonpartisan organizations conduct get-out-the-vote efforts in a manner that seems designed to benefit one political party, voters are rightly skeptical of how fair and nonpartisan such efforts are.”
CRC highlights left-wing Political Action Committee (PAC) Mind the Gap’s (MTG) promotion of “Everybody Votes” — a covert name for Voter Registration Project — in a memo obtained by Vox. MTG is a California-based Super PAC formerly led by disgraced alleged fraudster Sam Bankman-Fried’s mother, Barbara Fried, who helped write the memo advising the optimal strategy for allocating funds to support Democratic victories.
“The most effective tactic in a Presidential year by a wide margin is nonpartisan voter registration focused on underrepresented groups in our electoral process,” the memo states.
Contributing to charitable organizations is significantly more cost-effective “at netting additional Democratic votes,” the memo adds. The document also underscores a strategy of maintaining secrecy for partisan reasons, suggesting that if Republicans became aware of these efforts, they might target both MTG and the recipient organizations.
Although MTG’s memo only mentions Everybody Votes, foundations gave grants related to MTG to Voter Registration Project, appearing to indicate the organizations are one and the same, according to public documents and CRC’s report.
The David E. Reese Family Foundation contributed $20,000 to VRP for MTG’s “voter registration” initiative, according to a grant in 2019. Similarly, the San Francisco Foundation gave $190,000 to Voter Registration Project Education Fund for MTG’s efforts to support Everybody Votes, according to a grant.
Everybody Votes registered 5.1 million voters, 76% of whom were “people of color,” since its inception in 2015, according to its website. Further, 56% were women, and 46% were under 35 years old.
“VRP provided Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden between 1 million and 2.7 million votes,” CRC estimates.
“Oftentimes you see these organizations speak almost in code, and the code is specifically designed to make it seem as though they are targeting underrepresented minority groups or others,” Honest Elections Project Executive Director Jason Snead, who was not involved in CRC’s report, told the DCNF. “But when you put it all together, you can see the picture that they are painting is an effort to target primarily voters that are going to be voting for Democratic politicians and candidates … And so that’s how supposedly nonpartisan nonprofit groups will then turn around and act in very partisan ways.”
There is strong support for the notion that Everybody Votes’ blueprint is rooted in a plan by Corridor Partners, a progressive consulting firm, according to the report. Corridor Partners devised and emailed a plan in February 2015 that another foundation subsequently forwarded to then-Clinton campaign chairman Podesta, who later “commissioned” VRP.
Notably, the email’s subject line bore “VR” while the body mentioned “New c3 version,” indicating it was an updated charitable iteration of a prior voter registration plan.
“Even though the verbiage in the ‘new c3 version’ of the plan tried to camouflage its partisan goal of election victories for Democrats, the meat of the report—its voter data and funding recommendations—remained the same, and these elements became the Everybody Votes campaign,” CRC’s report asserts.
Everybody Votes’ (VRP) plan ultimately appeared strikingly similar to Corridor Partners’, even focusing on numerous overlapping swing states, according to CRC’s report. Both targeted a total of eight states, with six of them being the same — Arizona, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, North Carolina and Nevada.
The plans’ budgets differed by just $1 million, with figures of $105 million and $106 million respectively, according to the report. Additionally, their anticipated new vote projections were 2.4 million and 2.2 million.
Moreover, there is evidence that left-wing groups collaborated to share the Everybody Votes voter registration plan with Podesta in emails uncovered by CRC.
The email to EMILY’s List contained a blueprint for Everybody Votes, which the group subsequently forwarded to Podesta, according to CRC’s report. “Is this the registration program you were hoping for? Can I push it?” the president of EMILY’s List asked Podesta in a November 2015 email. (RELATED: Voter Groups, Funded By Liberal Megadonors, Launch Pressure Campaign For Meta To Censor Election Info)
Further, VRP received millions in funding from prominent left-wing donors, including over $10 million in grants from left-wing billionaire George Soros’ Open Society Foundations and a $500,000 grant from left-wing billionaire Pierre Omidyar’s Democracy Fund, according to their databases.
Billionaire Warren Buffett’s Susan Thompson Buffett Foundation donated more than $5 million to VRP, according to tax forms in 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019, 2021 and 2022. Buffett endorsed Hillary Clinton for president in 2016, according to The New York Times.
New Venture Fund, which is managed by Arabella Advisors, a consultant firm with connections to the Democratic Party, also funded VRP and its education fund with almost $13 million, according to tax forms in 2018, 2019, 2020 and 2021. Hopewell Fund, also managed by Arabella, funded VRP and its education fund with $7.8 million, according to tax forms in 2016, 2017, 2018 and 2019.
Although VRP was supposed to be nonpartisan, it hired several political consultants, and all were left-wing, according to CRC’s report.
One example was Fieldworks LLC, which VRP funded with nearly $6.5 million for “voter registration consulting” in 2020, according to a tax form. The organization “brings innovative grassroots and field strategies to Democratic and progressive campaigns and organizations,” according to its LinkedIn profile. VRP also gave The Outreach Team $4.7 million for consulting in 2020, an organization “powering the progressive movement,” according to its website.
“They have an election industrial complex and all the money comes from the left,” Snead told the DCNF. “All the resources come from the left and the politics that they push are all left wing.”
Dixon pointed out that voter confidence in elections has dropped following the 2020 election, according to polling of likely voters conducted by YouGov, a worldwide data and opinion firm.
“If you allow elections to become susceptible to the whims of special interest groups and billionaires rather than taxpayers and voters, you potentially corrode … [public] trust permanently,” Snead told the DCNF.
Everybody Votes is hiring employees for the upcoming 2024 election cycle and appears not to have altered its ambitions, according to its job description for a project manager position.
Everybody Votes, the White House, Fried, Corridor Partners, Grassroots Solutions, EMILY’s List, Open Society Foundations, Democracy Fund, New Venture Fund, Hopewell Fund, Arabella Advisors, Fieldworks LLC and The Outreach Team did not respond to the DCNF’s requests for comment.
David E. Reese Family Foundation could not be reached for comment. Susan Thompson Buffett Foundation does not respond to press inquiries, according to its website.
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