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Open letter to readers: Today and tomorrow

By Lynda Waddington | 11.17.11

Wednesday was a difficult day for The American Independent News Network, which is the larger entity that operates The Iowa Independent. Our chief executive and founder announced two of our sister sites would close and their content would be moved to The American Independent.

ACS lockout continues; plan emerges to repeal sugar protections

By Virginia Chamlee | 11.15.11

A recently introduced bill could have far-reaching impact on the U.S. sugar industry, including American Crystal Sugar, a farmer-owned cooperative that locked out 1,300 Midwest workers on Aug. 1.

Cain campaign: Farmers know more about regulations than EPA

By Andrew Duffelmeyer | 11.15.11

The chairman for Herman Cain’s Iowa effort says the campaign “relied more on the word of farmers than Washington regulators” in deciding to run an ad containing claims the Environmental Protection Agency says are false.

Mathis wins, Democrats maintain Senate control

Liz Mathis
By Lynda Waddington | 11.08.11

The Iowa Senate will remain under the control of a slim 26-25 Democratic majority when it reconvenes in January 2012.

Press Release

PR: Nation should work to address veterans’ challenges

By Press Release Reprints | 11.11.11

BRUCE BRALEY RELEASE — As US involvement in Iraq and Afghanistan ends, it’s more important than ever that our nation works to address the challenges faced by the men and women who fought there.

PR: Honoring veterans, help in hiring

By Press Release Reprints | 11.11.11

CHUCK GRASSLEY RELEASE — A difficult job market is challenging the soldiers, sailors and airmen who have protected America’s interests by serving in the Armed Forces.

PR: In honor of America’s veterans

By Press Release Reprints | 11.11.11

TOM LATHAM RELEASE — No one has done more to secure the freedom enjoyed by every single American than our veterans and those currently serving in the armed services.

PR: Honoring and supporting our nation’s veterans

By Press Release Reprints | 11.11.11

DAVE LOEBSACK RELEASE — Veterans Day is an opportunity to reflect on the service of generations of veterans and to honor the sacrifices they and their families have made so that we may live in peace and freedom here at home.

Flickr Creative Commons photo by Alan Light.
Flickr Creative Commons photo by Alan Light.

National Organization for Marriage funding comes from few sources

But as a 501(c)(4) organization, NOM is not required to disclose donors
By Luke Johnson | 01.06.11 | 12:00 pm

Three-quarters of the funding for the New Jersey-based National Organization for Marriage (NOM), a 501(c)(4) nonprofit dedicated to opposing same-sex marriage, comes from just five sources, according to its most recent 2009 990 form filed with the Internal Revenue Services.

NOM spent $635,627 in Iowa in 2010 to help bankroll the successful campaign to oust three Iowa Supreme Court justices over a ruling that legalized same-sex marriage. In 2009, the organization spent nearly $100,000 supporting a Republican House candidate in a special legislative election. NOM has also done a series of robocalls concerning same-sex marriage and held a pair of rallies in Iowa in early August to promote their point of view.

“The National Organization for Marriage has emerged as the nation’s only major national grassroots organization dedicated to protecting marriage,” said NOM’s president and founder, Maggie Gallagher, in July 2009. NOM describes itself as “the nation’s only grassroots organization focused on the threat to marriage at state and local levels.” NOM Executive Director Brian Brown said in a January 2010 press release, “NOM’s goal is a national grassroots organization that can make a difference in all 50 states, as needed.”

However, at least in terms of funding, its donations are quite concentrated. According to its 2009 990 form (PDF) obtained by the Human Rights Campaign, NOM received $7,106,388 in donations in 2009. Three donations of $2.4 million, $1.2 million, and $1.1 million constituted 68 percent of its total donations. Two additional donations of $400,000 and $150,000 mean that three-quarters of its funding came from just five sources.

Donations to 501(c)(4) organizations are not tax-deductible and organizations do not have to disclose their donors.

In September, reporter Jesse Zwick uncovered a $1.4 million donation from the Knights of Columbus to NOM in 2009, which does not seem to appear on the organization’s 990. NOM has a pattern of pushing the boundaries of disclosure laws: The organization sued the Rhode Island Board of Elections over the funding of ads, has been the subject of campaign finance complaints in Maine and Iowa and used a loophole in Minnesota campaign finance law all to avoid disclosure.

A request for comment to the National Organization For Marriage was not immediately returned.

Luke Johnson writes for The American Independent.


  • Marc Luxenberg

    You’d think that these huge donors would want to be known for all their good works. But no. In criminal law this is evidence of a culpable mens rea

  • Marco Luxe

    You’d think that these huge donors would want to be known for all their good works. But no, they flout the intent of disclosure laws instead. In criminal law this is evidence of a culpable mens rea – these people know they are un-American. They know it’s wrong for a tiny group of the very wealthy to so thoroughly manipulate the electorate. The irony is that these same people in all other contexts would want to limit the interference of government into their personal lives [and wealth]. I am, however, comforted somewhat by their self awareness of their own hypocrisy.

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