CREW Files IRS and FEC Complaints Against Americans for Job Security
Washington, D.C. – Today, Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW) called for the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and the Federal Election Commission (FEC) to investigate whether Americans for Job Security (AJS) violated tax and campaign finance laws. AJS spent millions of dollars on political ads during the 2010 mid-term elections, in violation of its 501(c)(6) tax status, and failed to both register as a political committee and file any required disclosure reports with the FEC.
“AJS spent millions of dollars on the 2010 elections, entirely disregarding the law,” said CREW Executive Director Melanie Sloan. “When an organization spends over 70 percent of its funds on political activities, there is no question what its real purpose is. While there is nothing wrong with working to elect Republicans, you can’t violate the law to do it.”
As a 501(c)(6) organization, AJS is barred from making political campaign activity its primary purpose. According to reports AJS submitted to the FEC and its tax return, AJS spent more than 72 percent of its expenditures in 2010 on these activities, in direct violation of the organization’s tax status. CREW filed a similar complaint with the IRS against AJS in 2004.
Additionally, groups that spend more than $1,000 a year on independent expenditures and whose major purpose is electing federal candidates must register with the FEC as political committees. AJS far exceeded the spending trigger in 2010, and made campaigning its major purpose by spending nearly three quarters of its money on federal elections. Political committees must also file periodic reports with the FEC, identifying donors and listing all expenditures. AJS has done neither.
“What is the point of having laws on the books if they are not enforced? There is no AJS exception to tax and campaign finance laws yet the group has been violating the law blatantly for years, apparently with no consequences. It is way past time for the IRS and FEC to get on the ball and put a stop to this.”