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- #MoralMondays: The SEIU Factor
- #MoralMondays: Those who want to be arrested attend a ‘meeting’.
Past Musings from The Lady
Category Archives: Non-Profit
In February the story broke about a Left leaning non-profit named Blueprint NC and a memo that was leaked, which called for the ‘eviscerating’ of top Republicans in the state. An attack on Governor McCory was front and center.
At the time, the story was broken both in the Charlotte Observer and at WRAL by Mark Binker. What Binker and WRAL blew off telling readers in the initial reports was that WRAL’s owner, Jim Goodmon, has a foundation which gave money to Blueprint NC and that former WRAL reporter, Chris Fitzsimon, is also linked to the Goodmon foundation as his own group, NC Policy Watch, is housed in the same place. Fitzsimon still regularly enjoys airtime at WRAL radio.
Mr. Binker has a new piece up. A ‘fair and balanced’ look at think tanks and policy groups out there that are influencing our politics. It’s actually not bad and mentions groups from both sides. Of course, Art Pope – the NC Left’s version of George Soros – gets a special mention. Of note, in the article there is finally a section on Goodmon, even if it is a little vague: Continue reading
The scandal surrounding Blueprint NC, a Left leaning non-profit, has been stepped up a notch with GOP leaders calling for an investigation into the group’s 501(c)(3) status. The group claims to be a non-partisan, however this recent memo would suggest otherwise. Civitas has just uncovered that the previously reported donation by the Z. Smith Reynolds Foundation to Blueprint that totaled $400,000 was not the full story.
While they talk about the $400,000 figure for 2013 what is left unsaid is the large and continuing supportby ZSR for Blueprint NC activities. Looking through past IRS 990’s on http://www.guidestar.com, along with the $400,000 above, ZSR has supplied $2.1 million since 2009 to Blueprint NC. They did this either directly or through the NC Justice Center which originally started and housed Blueprint NC with the assistance of a grant from Reynolds. (Source: Civitas)
The NC Justice Center also houses The AJ Fletcher Foundation. The Fletcher Foundation is run by Jim Goodmon, who owns Capital Broadcasting and TV station, WRAL. Jim Goodmon, Barbara Goodmon, James Goodmon Jr and Michael Goodmon all sit on the board of AJ Fletcher. Jim Goodmon Senior is Chairman of the Board.
NC Justice Center is also linked with NC Policy Watch – there is even a menu link to them on the NC Justice Center homepage. As I’ve written before, WRAL has not commented on the clear ties and bias these associations present. To reiterate the point made by Civitas:
Lastly, it should be noted that WRAL is owned by the Goodmon family, which has ties to Blueprint through four of its family members being on the board of the A.J. Fletcher Foundation. According to the Civitas Institute, the Foundation has given the progressive group $35,000 in donations, and a former reporter for WRAL, Chris Fitzsimon, is head of the NC Policy Watch – which was the point of the lance in the Blueprint attack machine. Fitzsimon is also allowed free airtime on WRAL-FM, which serves as a platform to attack his political enemies.
Looking at Fitzsimon’s commentary, one can see he is clearly not a fan of Pat McCrory. If you need more convincing, you can listen to him hammer McCrory’s State of the State Address – on WRAL of course.. He’s not a fan of Art Pope either and yep – you guessed it, WRAL reported:
“Whether it’s fair or not, he is one of the most polarizing political figures in North Carolina. And now he is writing a state budget for nearly 10 million people,” said Chris Fitzsimon, a policy analyst and writer with the liberal N.C. Policy Watch. “It’s shocking that a governor who claims he is trying to reach across the aisle would make such an appointment.”
Pope-funded Civitas has distributed a tax reform blueprint this week that would eliminate the individual income tax in favor of raising the sales tax and broadening the number of items and services to which sales tax applies. Fitzsimon questioned whether work like that by those think tanks will now become official McCrory administration positions.
How’s that for the pot calling the kettle black?
Fitzsimon’s Bio is posted on NC Justice Center and he also posts at NC Policy Watch’s Progressive Pulse. Just last month, Fitzsimon quotes an article by Mark Binker – the reporter covering the Blueprint NC memo for WRAL. Ironically, the article he quotes is about Republicans setting up a non-profit.
So, the question remains: When will WRAL report their connection to Blueprint NC? Continue reading
The recent scandal involving Left leaning Blueprint NC and their leaked attack memo calling for the ‘evisceration’ of Republican leaders in the state, specifically mentioning Governor Pat McCrory, is not going away anytime soon. North Carolina Republicans are calling for … Continue reading
An update to the Blueprint NC scandal that broke on Thursday evening, the Director for Blueprint NC, Sean Kosofsky, is attempting to disown the leaked memo and documents — even though it all came directly from employee Stephanie Bass’ email. Kosofsky’s statements were, at best, weak and desperate. WRAL, who still has not commented on the link between Blueprint NC and their owner, Jim Goodmon, reports:
“The email from Stephanie is referring to the slide deck, the POLLING MEMO and the data,” Blueprint NC Executive Director Sean Kosofsky wrote in an email on Saturday. “This document from early December is not our document at all. We never drafted that. All these news outlets have been had.
“This is a James O’Keefe-style splicing of two radially different things,” he continued, referring to a Republican filmmaker and provocateur whose work has frequently been called into question.
James O’Keefe, call your office. Two radially different things? All of the documents included seemed pretty much in line with each other in data and message. It gets better. The article also published Kosofsky emailed replies to questions, emphasis is mine:
Asked it was appropriate for his organization to participate in meetings where such memos are distributed and whether he endorsed all the ideas in the memo, Kosofsky replied via email:
Darn right. C3 nonprofits should absolutely try to stop bad policies that hurt the poor and hurt the environment, women and the middle class. If they need to exploit weaknesses of lawmakers, they should. I stand by that.
The meeting in December was of over 50 organizations. People bring their own idea. I am not going to claim or distance myself from things without greater context. The only thing that matters to Blueprint is what Blueprint does. I cannot speak for others. We cannot be held to what others do at meetings we are at. that is completely unfair.
I am not going to cherry pick ideas from that draft plan and say which ones we approve of or disapprove of. I will say this…The stakes are high for the people of NC. This governor and legislature are approving raises for their cabinet while gutting benefits for folks already injured by unemployment. Blueprint and our partners are passionate advocates for policy passed in the public interest, not passed for special interests. Our partners can educate the public, educate lawmakers and absolutely hold them accountable when they vote against the interests of the people of NC. the public should know that charitable groups can and do advocate strongly. they should. Blueprint doesn’t lobby or do any public advocacy. This isn’t about us at all.
So, let’s get this straight: Kosofsky claims it’s some kind of conspiracy, the documents are not related to each other but yet is proud of it and stands behind it. Got it.
The 2013 legislative agenda was not dated specifically, but the rest was – including the talking points. We saw the whole memo, who does he think he’s kidding? The big “DRAFT: NOT FOR DISTRIBUTION” and Bass’ email stating this was all “CONFIDENTIAL” and ‘not to share with the whole world’ were just there for fun.
None of these documents are related nor endorsed by Blueprint NC – except they are, but everyone is supposed to ignore that because ‘we’re taking it all out of context’! We’re clearly not understanding that a leaked memo with a group of attachments that look kind of bad are part of a big ‘gotcha style’ story perpetrated by Right Wingers, right? Especially since the story was first reported by that very Right Wing paper, The Charlotte Observer?
Wow… and they say Republican messaging is awful.
Mr. Kosofsky would do better to stop finger pointing, hyperbole and paranoid accusations and perhaps figure out who leaked the memo in the first place. Clearly someone found it disturbing enough to share with the press.
Liberal NC Non-Profit Group’s Attack Memo Leaked
@WRAL Silent On Internal Link To Blueprint NC’s Attack Memo
3rd Local Media Outlet Ignores Goodmon/Blueprint NC Connection