American Majority Action

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AMA Logo.pngAmerican Majority Action (AMA) is a Tea Party-affiliated 501(c)(4) nonprofit "dedicated to helping the grassroots compete against career politicians and a political establishment organized against new participation." Its organizational statement is, "We believe in the free market, American individualism and the belief that when American citizens engage in the political arena, real change happens. To that end, AMA provides resources, trainings, and guidance to organizations and individuals around the country."[1] It is the arm of the closely related American Majority group that "can engage in more politically tinged activities."[2] AMA president Drew Ryun said of the group, "We are excited to have the chance to partner with Tea Parties and 912 organizations across the United States."[3]

Campaign Funding & Electioneering

According to the Sunlight Foundation, AMA spent $140,249.68 in the 2010 elections to support 18 Republicans (including U.S. Rep. Sean P. Duffy (R-Wis.) and Wis. Sen. Dan Kapanke (R), currently the subject of a recall campaign, in his campaign to represent Wisconsin district 3 in the U.S. House) and oppose one Democrat. "This data includes electioneering communications, which are broadcast communications not otherwise reported as independent expenditures."[4]

The Center for Responsive Politics' OpenSecrets.org reported a grand total of $158,370 in independent expenditures by AMA in the 2010 Federal elections, not including electioneering communications.[5]

Staff

The President of AMA is Drew Ryun, twin brother of American Majority leader Ned Ryun and "former Deputy Director in the political division at the Republican National Committee during the 2004 election cycle."[6]

Anita MonCrief, ACORN whistleblower, is also on the staff. Her background is at odds with that of her coworkers at AMA and its sister group American Majority. Prior to accusing ACORN's affiliate Project Vote of "rampant voter fraud" in 2008, she was employed in the Strategic Writing and Research Department of ACORN Political Operations. Before that, she "worked with the American Bar Association’s Central European and Eurasian Law Initiative (ABA CEELI), the International Crisis Group, the Grameen Foundation and American Rights at Work. MonCrief has partnered with the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe on their mission to Macedonia as an election observer."[7] MonCrief is now a regular contributor to conservative blogs such as "Big Government, Hot Air, NetRight Daily, RedState [and] NewsReal Blog."[8] She is also "the National Spokesperson for American Majority and the Editor-in-Chief of a new website, Emerging Corruption."[9]

The Missouri Field Director is Raz Shafer.[10] Shafer is also the North Texas Field Representative for American Majority.[11]

The Pennsylvania Field Director is Martin Gillespie, "a former staffer for the Republican National Committee."[12]

Activities

Voter Fraud App

AMA partnered with Freedom Speaks LLC in 2010 to create a "Voter Fraud App" for iPhone, Blackberry and Android phones "to help identify, report and track suspected incidents of voter fraud and intimidation.... Reports are sent to election officials," specifically they are forwarded "to the respective secretary of states and election officials at the local level."[13][14] It features "Over 10 Issue Report Types":

  • Campaigning near a poll
  • Tampering with voter machines
  • Voter intimidation
  • Vote buying
  • Illegal electioneering
  • Provisional voting problems
  • Poll watchers/worker issues
  • Police interference
  • Abnormally long lines
  • Obstructing a poll worker
  • Unlawfully assisting a voter
  • Providing false information on a ballot application"[15][16]

AMA's Voter Fraud App FAQ page also contains the following:

"Can I enter a service request/report without taking a picture? Currently the mobile app requires a picture, however you can report issues from VoterFraudApp.com without one."[17]

Abe Sauer pointed out in a blog post on The Awl,

"In most states, election officials frown on picture taking at polling places. In 13 states they have prohibited it. Seven states actually have state laws making such photography illegal. For instance, just listen to the unambiguous language of California Election Code § 18541: 'No person shall... within 100 feet of a polling place... photograph, videotape, or otherwise record a voter entering or exiting a polling place.' How about Florida's 102.031(5): 'No photography is permitted in the polling room or early voting area.' "Or Texas (§ 61.013): 'A person may not use a wireless communication device within 100 ft. of a voting station' and 'A person may not use any mechanical or electronic means of recording images or sound within 100 feet of a voting station.'"[18]

It is unknown, after a media search, whether the app was used to report any alleged voter fraud in the 2010 elections.

Funding

AMA does not disclose its donors,[19] but "over 75% of the funding for American Majority... comes from the Sam Adams Alliance."[20] The Chairman and CEO of the Sam Adams Alliance, Eric O'Keefe, sits on the board of the Institute for Humane Studies, which is funded by the Koch Family Foundations.

Contact Information

There is no contact information listed on the organization website beyond a web contact form, but according to the AMA blog, in the lead-up to the 2010 elections "Liberty Headquarters" were Ohio, Pennsylvania, Missouri and Wisconsin.[21] Some of the headquarters locations are:

1802 W. 32nd St. Joplin, MO 64804[22]

4512 Hampton Avenue St. Louis, MO 63119[23]

4986 Gateway Drive, Ste. 206 Medina, OH 44256[24]

8902 Beckett Road West Chester Township, OH 45069[25]

15 Clemens Road Doylestown, PA 18901[26]

It is unknown whether any of these addresses are still occupied by AMA.

Articles and resources

Related SourceWatch articles

References

  1. American Majority Action About, organization website, accessed May 10, 2011
  2. Alex Pappas American Majority wants to infuse new Tea Party blood in system, Daily Caller, December 21, 2010
  3. Debra Erdley Umbrella group intends to unify area Tea Party activists, Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, September 14, 2010
  4. Sunlight Foundation Follow the Unlimited Money: American Majority Action, Inc., organization report, accessed May 10, 2011
  5. Center for Responsive Politics American Majority Action: Outside Spending Summary 2010, OpenSecrets.org report, accessed May 10, 2011
  6. American Majority Action About, organization website, accessed May 10, 2011
  7. Ibid.
  8. Andrew Breitbart Anita MonCrief, BigGovernment.com profile, accessed May 10, 2011
  9. Anita Moncrief Editorial Board, Emerging Corruption website, accessed May 10, 2011
  10. Alexandra Nicolas American Majority Action opens headquarters today, Joplin Globe, September 13, 2010
  11. American Majority About the Author, organization website, accessed May 10, 2011
  12. Debra Erdley Umbrella group intends to unify area Tea Party activists, Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, September 14, 2010
  13. American Majority Action Voter Fraud App, organization website, 2010, accessed May 10, 2011
  14. American Majority Action FAQ, organization website, 2010, accessed May 10, 2011
  15. American Majority Action Feature Rich, organization website, 2010, accessed May 10, 2011
  16. American Majority Action FAQ, organization website, 2010, accessed May 10, 2011
  17. American Majority Action FAQ, organization website, 2010, accessed May 10, 2011
  18. Abe Sauer American Majority's "Voter Fraud" App: It's a Tool for Election Law Violations, The Awl (blog), March 23, 2011
  19. Center for Responsive Politics American Majority Action: Outside Spending Summary 2010, OpenSecrets.org report, accessed May 10, 2011
  20. George Monbiot, "Are Right-Wing Libertarian Internet Trolls Getting Paid to Dumb Down Online Conversations?" AlterNet, Dec. 15, 2010.
  21. American Majority Action On grassroots, GOTV and boots on the ground, organization blog, October 19, 2010
  22. Alexandra Nicolas American Majority Action opens headquarters today, Joplin Globe, September 13, 2010
  23. St. Louis Tea Party Coalition Liberty Headquarters Grand Opening, press release, September 9, 2010
  24. American Majority Action Liberty Headquarters Grand Opening, press release, September 9, 2010
  25. Adam Kiefaber Tea party headquarters in West Chester opens tonight, WestChesterBuzz.com (news blog), September 14, 2010
  26. Kitchen Table Patriots Southeast Pennsylvania Liberty Headquarters- Grand Opening, press release, September 7, 2010