President Obama, speaking at a rally in Philadelphia, said "the American people deserve to know who is trying to sway their elections" and raised the possibility that foreigners could be funding his opponents.
"You don't know," Obama said at the rally for Senate candidate Joe Sestak and other Democrats. "It could be the oil industry. It could even be foreign-owned corporations. You don't know because they don't have to disclose."
Podesta, former chief of staff to President Bill Clinton and the head of Obama’s first transition team, founded the Center for American Progress in 2003. Last year, Podesta stepped down as CAP’s president—he remains its chair and counselor—and was replaced by Neera Tanden, who served in both the Obama and Clinton administrations.
CAP has emerged as perhaps the most influential of all think tanks during the Obama era, and there’s been a rapidly revolving door between it and the administration. CAP is also among the most secretive of all think tanks concerning its donors.
Foreign governments and business entities can also join the Business Alliance, whose membership list includes the Taipei Economic and Cultural Representative Office—which functions as Taiwan’s embassy in Washington and retains many lobbyists, including former Oklahoma Republican Senator Don Nickles and former Missouri Democratic Representative Richard Gephardt—and the Confederation of Businessmen and Industrialists of Turkey (TUSKON)..
With help from TUSKON, CAP also makes an annual fact-finding trip to Turkey, the most recent being in February of this year. The CAP delegation met with US Ambassador Francis Ricciardone and senior Turkish government officials. A former CAP staffer told me that TUSKON had “amazing access” and “could call anyone in the government and get us a meeting or interview.” As a result of the Turkish group’s support, CAP was “totally in the tank for them,” this source said...
CAP also presses for closer ties between the US and Turkish governments, just as Ankara’s lobbyists do. Last year, CAP hosted an event featuring Commerce Secretary John Bryson, who spoke on his “vision for deepening even further the US-Turkish commercial relationship.” Two years earlier, Podesta gave the keynote address at a TUSKON conference in Istanbul. In his speech—titled “The Unique Importance of the Turkish-American Relationship”—he praised CAP senior fellow Michael Werz for his work on “strengthening the US-Turkey relationship.” He also pointedly noted that Werz’s predecessor as CAP’s Turkey expert, Spencer Boyer, had left the think tank to become the Obama administration’s deputy assistant secretary for European affairs.
What does a think tank's contributions have to do with PAC money and advertising? Was this think tank advertising? Is there anything illegal about foreign money sponsored think tanks?
What does a think tank's contributions have to do with PAC money and advertising? Was this think tank advertising?
Is there anything illegal about foreign money sponsored think tanks?
"think tank" is just a nice sounding name for a political group that is taking some action, trying to influence, communicating directly to the power people in government.