(Washington, D.C.) – A new report released today from Accountable.US is revealing that People United For Privacy (PUP), a shadowy dark money group working to prevent disclosure of non-profit donors, has been raking in contributions from Leonard Leo’s BH Fund and other groups in Leo’s network.
In fact, since its founding in 2017, groups controlled by Leo and his allies have accounted for at least 76% of PUP’s total revenue. The only donation to PUP in 2021 came from the BH Fund.
Recent reporting in POLITICO exposed a corrupt bargain between BH Fund and Trump advisor Kellyanne Conway involving the sale of Conway’s polling company. POLITICO’s Heidi Przybyla found BH Fund “was formed in 2016 with an anonymous $24 million donation, [and] has been a nerve center for distributing millions of dollars around Leo’s network of dark-money groups bolstering former President Donald Trump’s Supreme Court picks.” Just last week, it was revealed that the group closed its doors amid increasing scrutiny.
It’s no surprise that Leo is behind this effort to block transparency legislation and keep his corrupt donors secret. As the recipient of the largest dark money contribution in history, he has a vested interest in preventing donor disclosure, and he’s using a dark money front group to seal the deal.”
Accountable.US President Kyle Herrig
After Democrats regained control of Congress in 2021, PUP coordinated efforts to block the For the People Act with conservative activist Grover Norquist and the right-wing State Policy Network. It also lobbied against donor disclosure throughout 2022.
Other PUP funders have included the Wellspring Committee, controlled by close Leo allies Ann and Neil Corkery, and the pass-through group Rule of Law Trust, which reported Leo as its sole officer in 2019.
Accountable.US recently launched Monitoring Influence to arm Americans with information about Leo and the constellation of right-wing groups working to undermine our democracy.