An immigration reform group says the Southern Poverty Law Center legal firm is violating federal tax rules for non-profits by acting “as a campaign operation for one political party.” The Immigration Law Reform Institute, which is an affiliate of the Federation for American Immigration Reform, is now preparing a legal claim to pressure the Internal Revenue Service to end the SPLC’s non-profit status. If that happens, donors wouldn’t get tax deductions for giving to the group.
“This document with exhibits runs over 100 pages, and spells out in laborious detail how the SPLC operates as a campaign operation for one political party and nothing more. For a huge range of reasons, the SPLC deserves to lose its tax status as a 501(c)(3) operation,” said a Nov. 22 statement from FAIR. “FAIR has argued for years that the SPLC is not a legitimate charity – it is a partisan organization engaged in illegal political activity,” said the statement.
From the SPLC’s entry on FAIR:
FAIR leaders have ties to white supremacist groups and eugenicists and have made many racist statements. Its advertisements have been rejected because of racist content. FAIR’s founder, John Tanton, has expressed his wish that America remain a majority-white population: a goal to be achieved, presumably, by limiting the number of nonwhites who enter the country. One of the group’s main goals is upending the Immigration and Nationality Act of 1965, which ended a decades-long, racist quota system that limited immigration mostly to northern Europeans. FAIR President Dan Stein has called the Act a “mistake.”
Between 1985 and 1994, FAIR received around $1.2 million in grants from the Pioneer Fund. The Pioneer Fund is a eugenicist organization that was started in 1937 by men close to the Nazi regime who wanted to pursue “race betterment” by promoting the genetic lines of American whites. Now led by race scientist J. Philippe Rushton, the fund continues to back studies intended to reveal the inferiority of minorities to whites.
FAIR stopped receiving Pioneer Fund grants in 1994 due to bad publicity it received when the grants were made public. At the time, FAIR was backing California’s punishing anti-immigrant Proposition 187, which would have denied education and health care to the children of undocumented immigrants in that state if it had not died as the result of court challenges.
Back in August, Rachel Maddow reported that Trump had cited FAIR in his first national campaign ad. The second half of the clip below really tells their story.