The IRS is remaining mum on whether it’s probing Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg, his wife, Priscilla Chan, and several left-wing nonprofits, who may have violated tax laws by intentionally dumping financial resources into the 2020 election to benefit then-candidate Joe Biden.
Last year, the Center for Renewing America (CRA) filed a complaint with the federal agency alleging that the Center for Tech and Civic Life (CTCL), the Center for Election Innovation and Research, and the National Vote at Home Institute engaged in a “partisan electioneering” scheme, spearheaded by Barack Obama’s former campaign manager David Plouffe, by pouring nearly half a billion dollars into the 2020 election to swing the contest to Biden.
In the lead-up to that election, Zuckerberg and Chan donated $400 million to groups like CTCL under the guise of assisting local election officials in administering elections during the Covid pandemic. In actuality, less than 1 percent of CTCL’s 2020 funds were spent on resources such as personal protective equipment. Analysis from election data experts later determined that the funds were “distributed on a highly partisan basis that favored Democrats.”
These “Zuckbucks” were also used to advance unsecured Democrat-backed voting policies, such as mass unsupervised mail-in voting and the use of ballot drop boxes. Their slanted distribution towards Democrat municipalities, especially in swing states, effectively funded a giant Democrat get-out-the-vote operation.
In its September 2022 complaint, CRA demanded the IRS investigate the entities “for unlawful political activity and the receipt and use of improper personal income tax deductions for donations to one or more of those entities.” CRA also alleged that Zuckerberg and Chan “received ‘improper tax deductions’ for the massive grants to ‘organizations engaged in conduct prohibited by the Internal Revenue Code in the 2020 election cycle,'” and called on the agency to determine whether their actions constituted “tax fraud.”
As outlined in the Internal Revenue Code, donations by charities that are not motivated for altruistic reasons, such as those that attempt to illicitly assist one party versus another, are explicitly prohibited.
In the year since filing its complaint, CRA hasn’t received answers from the agency on whether it has taken steps to investigate any of the aforementioned entities over the allegations listed in the filing. According to a CRA representative, the IRS has remained silent on the status of the complaint.
“The IRS is weaponized against the American people and [is] stonewalling anyone asking for accountability or answers,” CRA Policy Director Paige Agostin told The Federalist.
When pressed for comment on the status of CRA’s complaint and whether the agency has launched an investigation into Zuckerberg, Chan, or the listed nonprofits based upon the conservative group’s allegations, IRS spokeswoman Robyn Walker told The Federalist, “Due to federal laws, we cannot comment on specific taxpayers.”
While Zuckerberg and Chan have indirectly claimed their 2020 election spending spree “was a one-time donation,” CTCL revealed its plans to interfere in future elections in April 2022 via the U.S. Alliance for Election Excellence. As The Federalist previously reported, the Alliance is an $80 million, five-year initiative aimed at “systematically influenc[ing] every aspect of election administration” and advancing Democrat-backed voting policies in local election offices.
In its attempt to replicate CTCL’s 2020 strategy, the Alliance provides election officials with “scholarships” to cover Alliance membership costs. These scholarships are then “instantly converted into ‘credits’ that member offices can use to buy services from CTCL and other Alliance partners.”
In states where the acceptance and use of “Zuckbucks” by local election officials is prohibited or restricted, the Alliance’s strategy is slightly different. As the Honest Election Project’s Jason Snead previously told The Federalist, “jurisdictions that cannot receive private grants can still buy their way in for a relatively small sum,” which effectively permits the Alliance “to spread its influence even in states where lawmakers have tried to prevent it.”
While mum on whether it’s probing left-wing nonprofits like CTCL, the IRS seemingly had no problem unlawfully targeting conservative organizations during the Obama administration. Roughly 10 years ago, it was revealed that the IRS intentionally delayed applications for “tax-exempt status from right-of-center organizations” leading up to the 2012 elections. Numbering in the hundreds, these groups were “improperly subjected to baseless investigations, invasive and improper demands about their donors, and lengthy delays in processing routine paperwork.”
The Department of Justice ultimately settled with dozens of these groups over the scandal in 2017.