Whether Obama Wants It Or Not

Though Barack Obama has asked his supporters to refrain from giving to outside political groups, one advocacy organization is going to help whether he wants it or not.

Politico reports today that PowerPac.org plans to spend $10 million on voter registration efforts aimed at minority communities "to capitalize on Obama's momentum to benefit progressive causes and candidates around the country."

Here's an old PowerPac.org ad from the primaries:

So where does the money come from? Since PowerPac.org is a 501(c)(4) nonprofit organization, it doesn't have to disclose any donor information.

But there are some clues...

PowerPac.org is run by Steve Phillips, the son-in-law of Democratic mega-donors Herb and Marion Sandler, who were some of the biggest givers to outside groups in the 2004 election. (We know that because so much giving in 2004 went to Section 527 organizations, which eventually had to divulge donors.) But Phillips told Politico he's not tapping the Sandlers.

PowerPac.org also set up an affiliated 527 organization last year called Vote Hope, to help Obama in the primaries. The biggest donors to that group, besides Phillips, were husband-and-wife team Wayne Jordan and Quinn Delaney, who both gave $50,000.

Jordan, a California real estate investor, and Delaney founded the Akonadi Foundation, which gives grants to groups focusing on "racial justice." Jordan is also an Obama bundler, raising between $50,000 and $100,000 from friends, family and colleagues.

Phillips is a board member of the Democracy Alliance, which helps coordinate liberal donors. PowerPac.org, however, isn't one of the groups that Democracy Alliance recommends to its collection of big-dollar donors.



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