Showing posts with label NRA. Show all posts
Showing posts with label NRA. Show all posts

August 6, 2018

NRA Says They Are Going Through A Financial Crisis Due to Lawsuit From NY Officials

 No Every crazy should be carrying a gun leave a lone an AK 47 as above  (real pic inside a church)

The National Rifle Association says it could soon face a financial crisis that will force it to shut down some of its operations, including broadcasts by its NRA TV division. The gun rights group blames a campaign by Democratic New York Gov. Andrew Cuomoaimed at discouraging insurance companies and other financial institutions from doing business with the NRA. 
The organization has filed a lawsuit against Cuomo and the New York State Department of Financial Services in federal court, alleging that Cuomo and state regulators seek to "deprive the NRA and its constituents of their First Amendment rights to speak freely about gun-related issues and defend the Second Amendment."
Brian Mann, who reports for NPR and North Country Public Radio, says the suit claims Cuomo's actions could "deprive the NRA" of banking, insurance and other financial services that are "essential to the NRA's corporate existence."
The NRA is asking for an immediate injunction to prevent state officials from "interfering with, terminating, or diminishing any of the NRA's contracts and/or business relationships with any organizations." 

"If the NRA is unable to collect donations from its members, safeguard the assets endowed to it, apply its funds to cover media buys and other expenses integral to its political speech, and obtain basic corporate insurance coverage, it will be unable to exist as a not-for-profit or pursue its advocacy mission," the lawsuit states. "Defendants seek to silence one of America's oldest constitutional rights advocates. If their abuses are not enjoined, they will soon, substantially, succeed."
The news that the NRA may be in financial woes is being cheered by student activists and survivors of recent mass shootings, like Emma Gonzalez and David Hogg. The advocates from Parkland, Fla., say the news is evidence "the young people are winning." New York's governor doesn't appear to be backing down. In a statement, Cuomo has described the NRA's lawsuit as "a futile and desperate attempt to advance its dangerous agenda to sell more guns."
"In New York, we won't be intimidated by frivolous court actions from a group of lobbyists bent on chipping away at common sense gun safety laws that many responsible gun owners actually support," the governor's office said. "I am proud of my 'F' rating from the NRA, and I will continue to do everything I can to keep New Yorkers safe."
But Cuomo also acknowledged that in April, he directed state regulators to "urge insurance companies, New York State-chartered banks, and other financial services companies licensed in New York to review any relationships they may have with the National Rifle Association." Cuomo argued that such ties could "harm their corporate reputations and jeopardize public safety."
In an email to NPR, the NRA said pressure from regulators amounts to a blacklisting effort. "The NRA has encountered serious difficulties obtaining corporate insurance coverage," the email said. "If insurers remain afraid to transact with the NRA, there is a substantial risk that NRA TV will be forced to cease operating."
The NRA says it has 5 million members, and USA Today reports the organization takes in an annual average of $128 million in donations. 
In 2018, the group set fundraising records, and the NRA Political Victory fund took in $2.4 million in donations during the month of March alone, according to The Washington Post. 
HuffPost reports the NRA typically receives spikes in donations in the wake of mass shootings. After the Parkland school shooting earlier this year, Salon reports donations to the organization increased by nearly 500 percent, compared with the week prior to the tragedy. 
A lot of that money goes toward backing politicians that support the gun lobby. In 2016, the NRA spent $61 million backing current members of Congress, and President Trump received $31 million in advertising from the NRA during his campaign, according to USA Today
In recent years, the NRA has expanded its media outreach, distributing highly-produced videos promoting gun ownership over the Internet and cable.   
Over the past week, protesters have gathered to march against gun violence. On Thursday in Chicago, activists demonstrated over a recent spike in homicides, according to The Independent. USA Today reports that on Friday, during a visit to western Kentucky, Oliver North, the incoming president of the NRA, was met by both "an enthusiastic welcome" and protesters who shouted, "Shame!" 
Survivors of the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School shooting in Parkland, Fla., organized a demonstration for Saturday outside the headquarters of the NRA in Virginia. 
The Washington Post reports that the "teens will be joined by activists, protesters and survivors of gun violence to protest the NRA's role in blocking gun-control legislation and defending sales of guns such as the AR-15, the semiautomatic rifle used in the Parkland, Fla., massacre."
Lawrence Nathaniel, 25, executive director of the National Organization for Change, told The Washington Post, "The NRA has the ability to be the organization that fights for Second Amendment rights while also fighting to protect each and every American citizen, but they choose not to. They would rather threaten and antagonize us than sit down and talk about how we can work together to make sure every American has a quality and safe life."

July 20, 2018

The Deep Ties The NRA Has to The Accused Russian Spy

Imagine the super NRA full of American flags (and some nazi ones), all American as apple pie and a semi-automatic
rifle strap to an 18 yr just out of High School. Imagine they are financed by R U S S I A . Makes sense if Putin's plan is to disrupt America and it can't get to our Justice System, why not some of Congress favorite organization. By influencing the NRA they get to Trump's voter and secure that no matter what crazy thing Trump does he will ahve the unwavering support of that base. 🦊Adam


For decades, the National Rifle Association has promoted its hard-line politics with appeals to patriotism, freedom, and the staunch defense of the Second Amendment. But now, the controversial gun lobbying group finds itself deeply caught up in a wide-ranging effort to sabotage American democracy by an enemy foreign power. 
Federal prosecutors unsealed charges this week against 29-year-old Russian national Maria Butina, a self-styled gun activist with long-running ties to the NRA who worked for Alexander Torshin, a high-level Russian government, and banking official from President Vladimir Putin’s party. Butina, who was a graduate student at American University until this spring, began traveling to the United States in 2014 and operated as a “covert Russian agent,” according to an FBI affidavit. She acted as an unregistered foreign agent and participated in a multiyear conspiracy to infiltrate conservative political groups including the NRA, federal prosecutors say, in order to “advance the interests of the Russian Federation.”
Butina and Torshin—who for years also traveled to America for NRA events and was among Russian officials sanctioned by the Treasury Department in April—worked together in attempts to cultivate Republican politicians and eventually Donald Trump’s presidential campaign. Under Torshin’s direction, “the covert influence campaign involved substantial planning, international coordination, and preparation,” according to court documents, which detail some of the evidence gathered by the FBI on Butina’s connections to a Russian intelligence agency and Russian oligarchs. Torshin is referred to only as a “Russian official” in the court documents, but his identity has since been confirmed in multiple news reports, and he appears with Butina in both the United States and Russia throughout several years’ worth of social media posts previously documented by Mother Jones.
The pair of Russians spent years building ties with the NRA, as we reported in our recent investigation. And according to a New York Times report this week, the NRA “repeatedly brought Butina from her native Russia to the United States for events until she obtained a student visa in August 2016.”
Beginning back in 2013, Butina developed a relationship with an unnamed “American political operative” described in the court documents, who has been identified in media reports as GOP activist and NRA member Paul Erickson. In her private communications with Erickson, Butina spoke of the key influence of the NRA on the Republican party, noting that the gun group is “the largest sponsor of the elections to the US congress.” Through Erickson and her connections with the NRA, Butina sought to establish “‘back channel’ lines of communication” to influential political figures. In photos that she posted to her Facebook page, she posed with Republican politicians, including former presidential candidates Scott Walker and Bobby Jindal, and former US Sen. Rick Santorum.
Butina at an NRA shooting range in Fairfax, VA, posted to her VK page in May 2014
As the putative founder of a Russian group called The Right to Bear Arms, Butina forged connections with NRA executives, including former NRA president David Keene, who she was in extensive contact with over several years. Keene traveled to Moscow in November 2013 at the invitation of Butina and Torshin to attend a Right to Bear Arms event. That same month, future Trump national security adviser John Bolton—then a member of the NRA’s “international affairs subcommittee”—recorded a video address talking up gun rights at Keene’s request, which Right to Bear Arms purportedly used to lobby the Russian legislature. (Private gun ownership is relatively minimal in Russia.)
The following January, Torshin published a gun appreciation piece in the Washington Times, where Keene was the op-ed editor at the time. That April, Torshin, and Butina attended the NRA convention in Indianapolis, where Butina joined Keene for meetings. In fall 2014, Erickson traveled to Moscow to attend a Right to Bear Arms meeting with Butina.
Then in late March 2015—two days before Butina emailed Erickson a plan for further building political connections—she posted on Facebook that she was again headed for the NRA annual convention. Butina and Torshin both traveled to Nashville for the event that April, one of multiple NRA annual conventions that the pair of Russians attended between 2012 and 2016. There, Butina and Torshin met Scott Walker. According to a report in Bloomberg, Torshin also met and had a “jovial exchange” with Donald Trump.
Three months later, in July 2015, Butina went to Wisconsin to attend Walker’s presidential campaign launch. The Wisconsin trip came just two days after Butina had traveled to Las Vegas for FreedomFest, an annual conservative event where Trump was speaking. Trump, who had announced his White House run in June, fielded questions from the audience. Butina took a turn at the microphone: “I am visiting from Russia,” she said.
“Ahhhhh, Putin!” Trump interjected, prompting laughter from the crowd as he added a mocking riff about the current president: “Good friend of Obama, Putin. He likes Obama a lot. Go ahead.”
“My question will be about foreign politics,” Butina said, and then asked Trump if he would continue “damaging” economic sanctions against Russia as president. Trump appeared not to know who Butina was. After going off on Obama and digressing into trade talk, he responded that he would “get along very nicely” with Putin. “I don’t think you’d need the sanctions,” Trump said. 
When senior Trump campaign aides later saw the video of the exchange (first highlighted in the national media by our investigation published in March) they found it strange and disconcerting.

The NRA junket to Moscow

In December 2015, an NRA delegation including Erickson, Keene, NRA Vice President Pete Brownell, major NRA donor Joe Gregory, and Milwaukee Sheriff David Clarke traveled to Moscow, where they met with Kremlin officials—including Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Rogozin, one of the first Russians sanctioned by the Obama administration after Putin annexed Crimea in 2014. The delegation dined on lavish meals and visited a Russian gun manufacturer. Butina and Torshin participated in and helped host the gathering.
Sheriff Clarke, who has served on NRA subcommittees and spoken at NRA political events dating back to 2014, filed an ethics report showing that The Right to Bear Arms, Butina’s group, had paid $6,000 for his trip expenses. The report also noted that Brownell, who became NRA president in 2017, personally paid nearly $14,000 for Clarke’s airfare and visa expenses for the Russia trip. 
The NRA has tried to downplay the junket. This May, NRA national spokeswoman Dana Loesch, who speaks directly for the NRA leadership, commented on a story from my colleague David Corn about a Russian sniper rifle that the NRA helped promote by participating in a video recorded at the gun manufacturer during the Moscow trip. Loesch asserted in a tweet that “there was no NRA trip.” But when I raised that exchange again after the news of Butina’s arrest this week, Loesch confirmed the NRA delegation’s visit to Moscow—though she now claimed it was an unofficial one. “I said it wasn’t an official trip,” she tweeted at me.
The gun manufacturer’s promotional video opens with a title card reading: “The delegation of National Rifle Association of America (NRA), headed by the first vice-president of the association Pete Brownell, visited the Moscow firearms factory ORSIS on December 11, 2015.” The video shows the NRA leaders and representatives in talks with the Russians, touring the premises, and enthusiastically firing various weapons. In one segment, Butina can be seen sitting just behind Clarke.
Butina and Clarke (right); screen shot from video recorded at the Dec. 2015 gathering in Moscow
The NRA has not commented publicly so far about the federal case against Butina. Two NRA spokespersons declined to respond to a detailed inquiry from Mother Jones. David Keene and Paul Erickson also did not respond to multiple separate requests for comment.

Targeting the 2016 election

When the NRA annual convention kicked off in May 2016 in Louisville, Kentucky, Torshin met Donald Trump Jr. during a private dinner the night before his father gave a much-anticipated speech. (“The only way to save our Second Amendment,” his father told the crowd the next day, “is to vote for a person that you all know named Donald Trump.”) A lawyer for Don Jr. later said the exchange between his client and Torshin at the dinner “was all gun-related small talk.” The Washington Post reported this week that Butina also met Don Jr. briefly at the convention.  
Butina and Torshin are both “lifetime members” of the NRA, according to Torshin, who posed for photos in Louisville armed with a large rifle, an NRA “Ring of Freedom” donor ID badge hanging around his neck. 
That same month, as the New York Times previously reported, Erickson emailed a high-level Trump campaign official with the message that “Russia is quietly but actively seeking a dialogue.” He noted that the “international reach of the NRA placed me in a position a couple of years ago to slowly begin cultivating a back-channel to President Putin’s Kremlin.”
Three months earlier, Erickson and Butina had formed Bridges LLC; Erickson later told McClatchy that they created the South Dakota-based company for Butina to get financial assistance for her graduate studies—“an unusual way to use an LLC,” as McClatchy dryly noted. 
After Trump won the presidential election, according to the court documents made public this week, Butina contacted Torshin. “I am ready for further orders,” she told him.
A lawyer for Butina has denied the federal charges, calling them “overblown.” Butina appeared at a hearing in federal court on Wednesday in Washington, where her lawyer said that she had cooperated with an FEC inquiry in March regarding contributions to a political committee (no further details of which were specified at the hearing). The latest court filing from prosecutors on Wednesday alleged that Butina offered sex to another American, whose identity is unknown, in “exchange for a position within a special interest organization.”
According to a report earlier this year from McClatchy, the FBI has been investigating whether Torshin illegally funneled money to the Trump campaign through the NRA. (The FBI would “neither confirm nor deny” the investigation to Mother Jones.)
The Butina case is being prosecuted by the US Attorney’s Office for the District of Columbia and the National Security Division of the Justice Department; it is unclear to what degree the case may relate to the ongoing investigation by special counsel Robert Mueller. But a near certainty is that additional significant details from the case will emerge.
Butina in Moscow with former NRA president David Keene; posted Nov. 2013
The NRA seemed emboldened by the 2016 election. Sheriff Clarke gave another speech for the political arm of the organization at the 2017 annual convention in Atlanta, where he boasted, “You know I worked hard to get Donald Trump elected president of the United States.” As the crowd applauded, he added: “You see, these rat bastards on the left never give up. For them, election defeats don’t matter. It’s simply a time to regroup and continue their assault on our constitution, the rule of law, liberty, and American exceptionalism.”
Two weeks after the high school massacre this February in Parkland, Florida, NRA executive director Chris Cox met privately in the Oval Office with Trump and Vice President Mike Pence and then announced: “POTUS & VPOTUS support the Second Amendment, support strong due process and don’t want gun control. #NRA #MAGA.” 
Yet, as the federal government prosecutes an alleged Russian spy whose mission flourished thanks to her deep ties with the NRA, the gun group may no longer be able to so easily declare itself a patriotic defender of America.
Additional reporting contributed by Denise Clifton and Dan Friedman.

Posted on Mother Jones

Mother Jones was founded as a nonprofit in 1976

May 29, 2018

Parkland Students Convinced Publix Their Long Support of the NRA is Killing Children

WASHINGTON, DC - MARCH 24:  MSD student David Hogg speaks onstage at March For Our Lives on March 24, 2018 in Washington, DC.  (Photo by Paul Morigi/Getty Images for March For Our Lives)
The Parkland students are continuing to advocate for gun control, one issue at a time, and their efforts are creating real change. The latest proof of that is Publix, a supermarket chain found based in the southeastern United States.
After boycotts and protests on Friday, the grocery store has publicly announced it will stop making political contributions, including those for Florida gubernatorial candidate and proudly vocal "NRA sellout" Adam Putnam. It's all thanks to Parkland'sDavid Hogg and his peers, who spearheaded a protest against the chain with a successful "die-in" at one of the store's locations. 
"Anyone who supports an NRA sellout is an NRA sellout," Hogg tweeted on Tuesday in his call to arms to boycott Publix.  
Just a few days later on May 25, students — in partnership with an organization birthed out of the Parkland shooting, Change The Ref — led the protests in Coral Springs, Florida inside and outside the store, with chalk outlines in the parking lot to commemorate the lives lost during the shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School.  Inside, people staged a "die-in," lying on the floor of two local Publix stores on Friday. Additionally, Hogg put out a call for 12-minute die-in's to occur in various locations that afternoon as well.  The action worked, and Publix released a statement announcing that its donations to political candidates would cease. 
"We regret that our contributions have led to a divide in our community," the statement read, according to Tampa Bay Times. "We did not intend to put our associates and the customers they serve in the middle of a political debate. At the same time, we remain committed to maintaining a welcoming shopping experience for our customers. We would never knowingly disappoint our customers or the communities we serve."
The corporation and its leaders have donated $670,000 to Putnam specifically over three years, as reported by Tampa Bay Times. Hogg is also asking Publix to donate $1 million to the Stoneman Douglas Victims fund, though it's not clear if that's going to happen. 

Read the whole story and the long road of Publix and the NRA. Even the New York Times Exposing the huge amount of money only got them (The Times) bad press. No body wanted to believe or simply did not care until now.
You will also read about 5 other companies that are supporting this orgnization so they feel they don't have to compromize or giv accounts of their behaviour to no one.

Stop Loving Publix For Loving the NRA

                                                                        Image result for publix

Two years later, New Times is still getting hate mail for telling Floridians in 2016 to "stop loving Publix." You all yelled at us then and called us "carpetbaggers" for pointing out that the beloved supermarket chain has abysmal politics. But now, after the Tampa Bay Times detailed the gobs of cash the company is throwing at NRA-loving gubernatorial candidate Adam Putnam, an official #BoycottPublix movement is brewing, and, honestly, we're a little bitter. Now you all realize that Publix isn't the beloved, benevolent multi-billion-dollar corporation you thought it was?
The Times revealed Publix and others tied to the company have given $670,000 to Putnam in the past three years. Putnam is running a far-right campaign for governor complete with attacks on the so-called "fake news" media, cash from the state's hated utility and Big Sugar companies, and some terrifyingly white campaign ads. Importantly, Putnam said in 2017 he was a "proud NRA sellout" before shamefully trying to walk back that comment after the Parkland school shooting. After the Times article was published, several Parkland and Pulse shooting survivors, including David Hogg, demanded that people boycott the grocery chain until Publix stops funneling cash to Putnam.

Publix is now trying to fend off a swarm of horrible PR by insisting it somehow supports Putnam but not the NRA. Frankly, the chain should have faced this battle a long time ago. Farmworkers, for example, have routinely described Publix as indifferent to the dreadful conditions they face while picking produce. LGBTQ workers have accused the company repeatedly, over multiple years, of discrimination and harassment. m
Here's a primer on why Putnam isn't the only reason to boycott Publix:

1. Publix refuses to join a program guaranteeing farmworkers better wages and protections from sexual harassment. If you haven't seen the 2014 documentary Food Chains, stop reading this article and go watch it. The film chronicles the Coalition of Immokalee Farmworkers, a labor-rights group in Southwest Florida that formed to protect the rights of people picking produce in the Sunshine State. Tomato and other produce pickers in Florida live in squalor because major grocery chains including Publix demand that produce be sold as cheaply as possible. Many live crammed into trailers with other workers, wake up before dawn, work impossibly long shifts in the sun, and rarely, if ever, see their families.
To help end this system, the Coalition of Immokalee Farmworkers created the Fair Food Program. Major, multinational corporations, including Walmart and Whole Foods, have joined and pledged to pay workers a penny more per pound of tomatoes picked. Because 80 percent of farmworker women report sexual harassment or abuse, companies that join the Fair Food Program also agree to stop buying products from farms where abuse is reported.
Publix refuses to join the program. (Here's its extremely callous statement about that subject.) The company refuses to even speak to the Coalition of Immokalee Farmworkers. Food Chains documents a hunger strike the coalition held outside Publix's headquarters, which wound up doing zilch to persuade the company to join the program. Even now that the #MeToo movement has taken hold, Publix has refused this simple step that can help protect farmworkers from sexual violence.
2. Its supermarkets have been repeatedly accused of being hostile places for LGBTQ employees. Last January, the LGBTQ community became enraged at the chain after HIV-positive activist Josh Robbins reported that Publix refused to cover "pre-exposure prophylaxis" (PrEP) drugs that prevent HIV-negative people from contracting the virus. Because HIV is more prevalent among gay men, many doctors encourage them to take the drug to prevent transmission. It turns out Publix had no actual reason for refusing to cover the drugs — it simply didn't want to, and reversed its decision after LGBTQ activists became rightfully upset.
Most people suspect that Publix's reasoning was entirely political and that the chain simply didn't want to "subsidize" safe, potentially gay sex. The chain has faced anti-LGBTQ accusations for years: Numerous employees have recounted allegations of unwelcoming workplaces to New Times since 2014. Gay men have been denied bereavement pay to grieve for dead loved ones. Gay men have been awarded money for being needlessly fired. The company says it's "improving" its stance on LGBTQ issues, but as the PrEP saga showed, it's still far behind the times.  
3. The heiress to their founder's fortune hates medical marijuana. Carol Jenkins Barnett, the daughter of founder George Jenkins, in 2016 gave $800,000 to a scare-tactics campaign trying to prevent medical marijuana from becoming legal in Florida. The contribution would seem bad enough on its face, but it looks even worse when you consider that Publix is also a pharmacy and that doctors in medical-marijuana states prescribe fewer doses of opioids, anti-anxiety meds, and other prescription pills when medicinal cannabis is legal.
4. Publix has had a hand in fighting local minimum-wage increases and environmental protections. Publix has, in the past, exerted major influence over the Florida Retail Federation, a pro-corporate, right-wing trade group that really doesn't like when workers in the state ask for things such as fair wages and bargaining rights. After the City of Miami Beach tried to raise its minimum wage to an eventual $13.31 per hour in 2016, the Retail Federation sued. At the time, the federation's five-member board of directors included a Publix executive. 
The Publix-backed Federation also sued the city of Coral Gables after the town tried to ban the use of plastic bags in a bid to help clean up the environment. (For what it's worth, Publix also apparently has a pretty big food-waste problem, too.)
5. The company for years has donated to gun-loving RepublicansThe Putnam campaign is not even close to the first time Publix or its executives have dumped cash into Republican coffers. Sure, it's donating an unprecedented amount of money to Putnam, but the chain has helped prop up a whole laundry list of NRA-coddling GOP politicians, including Sen. Marco Rubio (who accepted $36,500 in Publix cash in 2016) and Rep. Carlos Curbelo (who got $31,600 the same year). According to the blog Florida Politics, the company gave $2.6 million to Florida candidates during the 2016 election cycle, and the majority of that money went to the GOP.
Bet that next Pub sub might taste a little different from now on.
[Top Picture: Florida today]
5 Other COmpanies Besides Publix Giving Big Money to the NRA:

Image result for adam putnamFlorida gubernatorial candidate, Rick Scott ally, and self-proclaimed "Proud NRA sellout" Adam Putnam
(on the picture on left) will pretty much take campaign money from anyone. Case in point: He scheduled a fundraiser last week with a man who was previously videotaped repeatedly shooting two dogs. Putnam responded by saying that the donation from said dog-shooter was fine, since his opponent, the Trump-endorsed Ron DeSantis, "took donations from Democrats," because apparently, Democrats are morally equivalent to people who shoot dogs.
But one of Putnam's big donors has spent the last week gravely regretting their financial support: Publix faced a "die-in" from Parkland survivors, led by David Hogg, over the $650,000 the grocery chain has given Putnam over the last three years. Gun-control advocates demanded Floridians boycott Publix until the company changes its ways — and, in response, Publix agreed to suspend its political donations and reevaluate where its money goes. 
For gun-control advocates, that's a victory (though it's unlikely Publix will stop donating political cash overall), but there are a whole bunch of other Florida corporations and executives still propping up the "proud NRA sellout." 
Those companies have so far evaded criticism for their donations — here are the most prominent few:  
1. Florida Power & Light. FPL, the company that spent millions trying to con Floridians into giving up their solar-power rights in 2016, runs a nuclear plant in Homestead that polluted Miami's drinking water supply and remains a massive carbon polluter contributing to climate change. According to the Miami Herald, FPL had already given Putnam's "Florida Grown" political-action committee a whopping $587,060 as of March 2017. 
2. Big Sugar. U.S. Sugar and Florida Crystals are the only companies that Florida environmentalists hate more than utility firms. Environmentalists blame Big Sugar for polluting the Everglades and the state's drinking-water supply. According to a Treasure Cost Palm analysis from last month, U.S. Sugar has given Putnam's PAC $340,000 since 2017, while Florida Crystals has kicked in $65,000.
3. Walt Disney World. Much like Publix, Disney is another beloved Florida corporation with absolutely garbage politics. The company was the subject of a huge labor protest earlier this year, which somehow didn't get much national press attention. According to Florida Division of Elections, the Big Mouse has pumped $510,000 into Putnam's PAC since 2017.

4. Comcast and AT&T. According to state records, Comcast dumped $75,000 into the Florida Grown PAC in the last 12 months. AT&T pitched in $25,000, too. If you don't already despise these companies, then — congrats! You must be the CEO of Comcast yourself. Your life sounds cool. Can we have $75,000, too?
5. Private Prison Giant GEO Group. GEO Group, based in Boca Raton, is the second-largest private-prison company in America. They control both standard prisons and even a bunch of detention centers for Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE). In 2017, the American Civil Liberties Union said that ICE guards at a GEO facility in Arizona were torturing Iraqi inmates. GEO has repeatedly been sued for allegedly forcing immigration detainees to work for food, has been accused of sucking money out of defenseless prisoners for necessary items, has been accused of mismanaging millions in federal money, and operated a Southern California facility that was named the "deadliest ICE detention center of 2017." The company helped prop up Donald Trump's presidential campaign — and has donated at least $50,000 to Putnam's PAC, per state records.

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