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A 'Grassroots' Group With the Backing of 'Deep-Pocketed Liberal Groups'? Yes You Can!


President Obama’s 2012 campaign manager and Organizing for Action's national chairman Jim Messina. (Getty Images).

The Obama administration last week introduced the world to Organizing for Action, a supposedly grassroots-powered political group that would “change politics from outside Washington,” as POLITCO puts it.

But like most things in politics, nothing is what it seems: The group is “closely affiliated” with “insider liberal organizations” funded by people like billionaire philanthropist George Soros and corporations including Lockheed Martin, Citi, and Duke Energy (to name only a few).

OfA “has quietly sought support from the same rich donors who backed Obama’s campaigns, asking for help from Democratic donors and bundlers in town for the Inauguration at a closed-door corporate-sponsored confab that featured Bill Clinton as the keynote speaker,” the report adds.

"Grassroots," huh?

There’s more:

... invitations for the Saturday meeting at the Newseum where Organizing for Action was unveiled for the liberal big-money set came from Obama’s National Finance Committee ... as well as the Presidential Inaugural Committee, the Center for American Progress and Media Matters.

Dubbed the “Road Ahead” meeting, the conference was sponsored by a White House-allied trade association called Business Forward, which is funded by major corporations including Microsoft, Walmart and PG&E – each of which sent senior executives to participate in a panel on how to boost American economic competitiveness.

“We need you. This president needs you,” Obama’s 2012 campaign manager and OfA's national chairman Jim Messina said in his pitch to potential donors.

Messina also told conference-goers that OfA was “building a national advisory board filled with people in this room.”

For his part, OfA Director Jon Carson said “there’s going to be a place for each and every one of you.”

Now, to be fair, OfA didn’t completely dismiss its grassroots activists.

“They got their own pitch the next day at a bigger, no-invitation-necessary gathering called the ‘Obama Campaign Legacy Conference’ held at the Washington Hilton,” POLITCO notes.

“There, Carson told reporters that OfA would ‘absolutely’ be funded mostly by grassroots donors like those Obama highlighted in his campaign, rather than big corporate donors,” the report adds.

However, a spokeswoman with OfA declined to comment on the über-ritzy Newseum conference and Messina's promise to surround the group with “deep-pocketed liberal groups.”

Click here to read POLITICO's full report.

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