Tax Notes Today quoted Trevor Potter concerning close connections between 2016 presidential candidates and supposedly independent groups organized under sections 501(c)(4) and 527. For the complete article, please visit Tax Notes Today's website (subscription required).
Excerpt taken from the article "Independence of Tax-Exempt Groups in White House Race Questioned" by Paul C. Barton for Tax Notes Today.
Nonprofits to Still Have Vital Role
"There's no reason to believe the prominence of 501(c)(4)s will fade in this election cycle," Paul S. Ryan, senior counsel to the Campaign Legal Center, told Tax Analysts. Similarly, Trevor Potter, a former FEC commissioner now with Caplin & Drysdale Chtd., said that for "publicity-shy wealthy donors, it is an option the campaigns can offer -- 'Give to our c4 and avoid publicity and still help us.'" As for specific tasks in the White House campaigns, Potter and other observers said that they suspect nonprofits will do a blend of advertising and research, including polling, and provide a way to pay for "star" staffers who otherwise would be on the campaign payroll but are not doing work that must be in-house.