Philadelphia partner Scott Coffina was quoted in the Washington Free Beacon in an article titled, “Ethics Attorneys Question Propriety of Obama Dark Money Org.”
While once confined within the Democratic National Committee (DNC), Organizing for Action was recently re-launched as a tax-exempt nonprofit, separate from the DNC, with Jim Messina, Obama’s 2012 campaign manager, as chair of the organization.
The group is organized as a 501(c) 4 and is able to collect unlimited funds without having to disclose donors; its aim is to build grassroots support for the Obama administration’s policy agenda.
Scott, a former Associate Counsel to President George W. Bush, said he was not aware of comparable relationships with outside groups during his time in the White House.
“The big concern [with OFA] is what a fine line they’re drawing because this is the entire political apparatus that’s running this,” he said. “I don’t know if I would have shot it down out of hand, but I would have probably advised that the leadership of it be a little less heavy on the political operatives and a little more heavy on the policy people.”
He also questioned whether the former political operatives running OFA would be tempted to coordinate with partisan Democratic operations, particularly during the 2014 midterm elections.
“The way this organization has been run is like a political operation, and now it has to turn on a dime and completely turn its back on that,” he said. “It’s gotta be policed, and who’s going to police it? Is the White House going to police it? Is it going to police itself?”
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