Monday, November 1, 2010

New Evidence Tea Party is Violating 501c(4) Status

As I documented previously, an advertisement on Reboot Congress paid for by the St. Louis Tea Party directed people to a site that said that Ed Martin "deserves your vote" and that "Ed Martin deserves to Serve Instead of Russ Carnahan." This appears to be a straightforward violation of the tea party's 501(c)4 status, which permits them to communicate endorsements to their members but not to the public at large. It's hard to think of a better example of "communicating to the public" than placing a web ad that takes you directly to a site that tells you to vote for Ed Martin.

I've now found more evidence of the tea party violating their 501(c)4 status and election laws. The Tea Party has been placing google advertisements that show up on sites like Big Government:

You can see a larger version of the advertisement here:

The ad takes you to the main page of the St. Louis Tea Party site, which prominent features a GOTV video from Bill Hennessy:

You can watch the video here:

In the video, Bill Hennessy says the following:
I'm going to ask you to take one hour, just one hour, Monday or Tuesday, to come to the St. Louis Tea Party Headquarters at 4512 Hampton Avenue in St. Louis Hills, just south of Hampton Village, and give one hour to phone calls or knocking on doors asking your friends and neighbors, your fellow citizens to go to the polls on Tuesday and vote for Ed Martin and the tea party candidates across the ballot.
So, the St. Louis Tea Party paid for Google Advertisements that direct people to a site where Bill Hennessy directly asks them to vote for Ed Martin. Unless I'm missing something, this is a pretty obvious violation of election laws.

1 comment:

  1. Laws don't matter to these people. Neither does any kind of actual truth - unless it advances their leader's careers in some way.

    I mean think of it this way. The idea of "Tea Party" is basically a reference to what was essentially an illegal activity used for a propaganda stunt to upset the social order. That's what the meme of "tea party" suggests. And with that, there ARE NO RULES. They have a pass to do whatever they want. Why? Because they're the Tea Party for God's sake! If they followed rules like everybody else, they wouldn't be who they are at all. They wouldn't be worthy of the name.