“While Schlapp and the American Conservative Union may act like they’re above the law, we’re here to remind them that they aren’t”
WASHINGTON, DC – Following explosive reports of the American Conservative Union’s (ACU) treasurer resigning due to financial mysteries surrounding the organization’s leader, government watchdog Accountable.US today filed a complaint with Attorney General of the District of Columbia Brian Schwalb against the American Conservative Union.
Through the American Conservative Union, Matt Schlapp has made a name for himself by hosting a platform for extremists to socialize and strategize. For years, Schlapp has eroded our democracy by propping up these right-wing actors — and now, it looks like he might even be raiding his organization's funds to cover his personal bills. While Schlapp and the American Conservative Union may act like they're above the law, we're here to remind them that they aren't.”
Accountable.US president Kyle Herrig.
From the complaint:
“The evidence strongly suggests that the Organization’s Board of Directors has repeatedly violated its fiduciary duties to the Organization by failing to adequately supervise its financial activities and by violating its bylaws.
…Mr. Schlapp, as a member of the Board of Directors and an officer of the Organization, has repeatedly violated his fiduciary obligations for the reasons described immediately above. Additionally, Mr. Schlapp has individually breached his fiduciary obligations by failing to provide pertinent financial information about the Organization that he apparently possessed, to the Board. Such violations compound the existing failures of the Board of Directors.
Mr. Schlapp has also uniquely and egregiously violated his statutory obligation to avoid self-dealing. As a director and officer, Mr. Schlapp has an obligation to act in a manner he reasonably believes to be in the best interests of the nonprofit corporation and not for his personal benefit. Mr. Schlapp breached this obligation by accepting over $270,000 in legal fees for a personal matter from the Organization without providing the Board of Directors with the supporting information needed for the Board to adequately oversee the transmittal of funds. By failing to account for the Organization’s funds spent on his own legal fees, which prevented the Board from exercising its fiduciary oversight responsibilities, Mr. Schlapp breached his fiduciary duties to the Organization twice over.
I request that the OAG exercise its statutory and common law authority to immediately open an investigation into whether the American Conservative Union Board of Directors and its chairman Matt Schlapp have breached their fiduciary duties under District of Columbia law by failing to oversee the Organization’s financial activities and failing to adhere to the Organization’s adopted bylaws.”
Read the full ethics complaint here.
Accountable.US launched its Monitoring Influence project to document the dark influence network connecting right-wing organizations like American Conservative Union. Learn more about ACU and its annual CPAC conference here.