‘Grassroots’ Campaign Pushing Abortion In Red State Actually Bankrolled By Soros, Dem Dark Money

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Robert Schmad Contributor
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The organization behind a ballot initiative that could reverse Florida’s six-week abortion ban goes to lengths to promote its “grassroots” credentials, all while taking in millions from liberal dark money groups and other deep-pocketed sources, campaign finance records show.

Floridians Protecting Freedom (FPF), one of the main groups pushing for a 2024 ballot measure that would enshrine the right to an abortion in the state’s constitution, touts its “grassroots” campaign and fundraising in several press releases it has sent out in recent months. However, the group has taken in massive sums of cash from a sprawling liberal dark money network and organizations backed by wealthy liberal donors.

For instance, the Sixteen Thirty Fund gave $1 million to FPF on May 31, according to Florida campaign finance records. The Sixteen Thirty Fund spends tens of millions every year, with a significant portion of that going toward electing Democrats, all while not disclosing its donors, according to Politico. The nonprofit is managed by the D.C.-based consulting firm Arabella Advisors.

Arabella Advisors, a for-profit venture run by Clinton administration veteran Eric Kessler, manages a network of seven nonprofits that pours tens of millions of dollars every year into pro-abortion causes, climate initiatives and other left-of-center political groups. Arabella has been accused of running a “dark money” network due to the large quantities of untraceable cash it pumps into politics.

The Sixteen Thirty Fund and other dark money groups have supported similar abortion ballot measures in Ohio and Michigan. Democrats see abortion referendums as an opportunity to sway voters to their side and expand their power in November. (RELATED: Abortion Advocacy Groups Saw A Massive Revenue Spike As The Supreme Court’s Overturn Of Roe Unfolded, Tax Forms Show)

One of Sixteen Thirty Fund’s largest donors is Swiss billionaire Hansjorg Wyss.

The Tides Foundation, which donated roughly $3 million to FPF between December 2023 and April 2024, also spends tens of millions of dollars annually on advancing left-of-center causes. In addition to supporting pro-abortion causes, Tides has also thrown money behind a collection of groups that have contributed to the wave of pro-Palestinian protests that swept the United States following the Oct. 7 terrorist attacks in Israel.

The Tides Foundation is based out of San Francisco, according to tax filings.

Denise Rodriguez wears an Abort Ron DeSantis t-shirt People as she awaits the arrival of President Joe Biden during his campaign stop at Hillsborough Community College (Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images)

PPF also received backing from the New York-based Soros family, one of the most influential clans in liberal politics.

George Soros announced in June 2023 that he would be turning over control of his philanthropic empire to his son, Alex Soros, The New York Times reported. Alex, in a July 2023 interview with the Wall Street Journal, described himself as “more political” than his father and said he would focus on advancing abortion rights.

The Soros-backed Open Society Action Fund contributed $1 million to FPF on May 7, according to campaign finance records.

While Soros’ philanthropic network and other shadowy liberal donors from outside Florida poured millions into FPF, the group’s public communications painted its campaign as being powered by ordinary people.

On Sept. 15, 2023, the organization bragged about its “grassroots fundraising” operation. A few days earlier, on Sept. 6, one of FPF’s executive committee members stated that “Florida has never seen a citizen initiative with the momentum and grassroots support” like theirs.

FPF’s campaign director touted its “unprecedented grassroots support” on April 1, after the organization had accepted more than $1 million from Soros’ network and the Tides Foundation.

Other deep-pocketed out-of-state groups pouring money into the effort to overturn Florida’s existing abortion law include the New York-based Service Employees International Union, which has contributed $500,000 to the effort, as well as D.C.-based advocacy groups like NARAL Pro-Choice America, which gave $100,000, and the Human Rights Campaign, which donated about $18,000 worth of t-shirts to the cause.

Floridians are set to vote in November on whether to add an amendment to their constitution that reads “no law shall prohibit, penalize, delay, or restrict abortion before viability or when necessary to protect the patient’s health, as determined by the patient’s healthcare provider.” The amendment requires 60% of the vote to pass and a poll released June 7 showed that 69% of voters approved of the measure, Fox 13 News reported.

FPF did not respond to the Daily Caller News Foundation’s request for comment.

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