California Professional Firefighters

Out-of-State Mystery PAC Drops $11 Million Into Yes on 32 Effort

A shadowy Phoenix-based group called Americans for Responsible Leadership contributed $11 million to the Small Business Action Committee PAC.  The group has received over $20 million in special interest money to pass Prop. 32 and defeat Prop. 30. 

Accountability for Thee ... Not for Me

Little is known about Americans for Responsible Leadership, though its leader, Robert Graham, has a history of anti-firefighter political action in Arizona. The sparse information made available on the group’s website, ,  includes this mission statement:

“Americans for Responsible Leadership seeks to promote the general welfare by educating the public on concepts that advance government accountability, transparency, ethics, and related public policy issues.”

Interestingly, this “accountability” and “transparency”-promoting entity does not feel strongly enough about those principles to disclose any of its funding sources or leadership.

The official campaign supporting Proposition 32, has also benefited from anonymous money -- at least $15 million including $4 million from a group linked to the shadowy oil magnates the Koch brothers.

Pro-32 Campaign: Don't Ask Us ... We Just Cash The Check

The SBAC PAC, when asked about the miraculous appearance of the mystery millions from Arizona, pleaded ignorance. According to the Sacramento Bee :

"A spokeswoman for the Small Business Action Committee said she didn't know where Americans for Responsible Leadership got its money.
“They are an organization that has seen over the last several weeks that we've been leading the fight No on 30, Yes on 32, and apparently they just decided to contribute…'"

She said she did not know anything beyond that about Americans for Responsible Leadership, other than that "it's a legitimate group."

Californians should ask why a secretive group from Arizona is swooping into California and spending millions to sway elections,” said No on Proposition 32 chairman Lou Paulson. “A deceptive initiative masquerading as ‘campaign reform’ that claims to ‘stop special interest money’ is hiding behind $15 million in out-of-state, unexplained contributions. It’s time for the Small Business Action Committee and the Yes on 32 campaign to come clean with California’s voters about who exactly is funding their campaign. It’s time for ‘Stop Special Interest Money Now’ to stop concealing its donors, now.”

Bookmark and Share