Type of organization: Super PAC
Supports: Republican candidates
Founded: Sept. 10, 2010
Social Media: YouTube channel
- Ken Blackwell (co-chair): Former Secretary of State of Ohio who served as the honorary co-chair of Republican President George W. Bush’s re-election campaign in 2004.
- Ed Brookover (co-chair): Long-time GOP operative-turned-political consultant who formerly advised Rep. Michele Bachmann
- David Langdon (treasurer and custodian of records): Attorney with Langdon Law in Cincinnati who has made a number of contributions to Kentucky Republican Rand Paul, on whose Senate campaign Jeremy Hughes (see below) once worked.
- Jeremy Hughes (past treasurer): Served as the state director of Texas Gov. Rick Perry’s presidential campaign in Nevada and has previously been active in politics in Ohio, Mississippi and Kentucky.
Restore Our Future was the big-name super PAC supporting Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney. Not so well-known is a second organization that hopped on the Romney bandwagon, Citizens for a Working America PAC. The super PAC was created in Virginia on Sept. 2, 2010, and that fall, it made a large ad buy against then-House Budget Committee Chairman John Spratt, D-S.C., who was unexpectedly defeated in the 2010 midterm elections.
The super PAC met with some controversy when it accepted a single $255,000 donation in 2010 from a Virginia consulting group called “New Models.” Questions were raised as to whether the group was being used as a pass-through for unnamed donors.
In the 2012 election cycle, Citizens for a Working America PAC had originally intended to back the presidential campaign of House Tea Party Caucus Chairwoman Rep. Michele Bachmann, R-Minn., but it switched to Romney’s side shortly before Iowa’s presidential caucuses.
The PAC’s first expenditure of the 2012 election cycle came in the form of a $455,000 in support of Romney for television advertising in South Carolina, Federal Election Commission records show.
Much of that money came from New Models and Citizens for a Working America Inc., which is a nonprofit registered under section 501(c)(4) of the U.S. tax code. The 501(c)(4) nonprofit group also made a $475,000 Christmas Eve ad buy supporting Romney in Iowa, FEC records indicate.
The Center for Public Integrity traced an address in a FEC filing for that group showing a home base of JSN Associates in Dayton, Ohio. The “JSN” is James S. Nathanson, who said the group is “very definitely pro-Romney.” He would not say who the nonprofit group’s donors are.
Before the 2012 election was over, the Citizens for a Working America PAC also made independent expenditures in a handful of U.S. House races in Indiana and Kentucky.
See more data on Citizens for a Working America PAC at OpenSecrets.org.
- “Believe in America,” a pro-Romney ad.
Last updated: Jan. 17, 2013
Help support this work
Public Integrity doesn’t have paywalls and doesn’t accept advertising so that our investigative reporting can have the widest possible impact on addressing inequality in the U.S. Our work is possible thanks to support from people like you.