by Mitch Kokai
Senior Political Analyst, John Locke Foundation
Stacey Abrams’s New Georgia Project is collecting donations without a license in at least nine states, opening itself up to fines and criminal inquiries, a Washington Free Beacon investigation found.
State laws across the country prohibit charities that have not filed required financial disclosures with the IRS from soliciting donations. But the New Georgia Project, which missed the Nov. 15 deadline to file its Form 990, is still raising money through a nationwide campaign hosted by the online fundraising platform ActBlue. Representatives at the relevant agencies in Tennessee, Mississippi, and North Carolina, where the New Georgia Project’s charity license has expired, told the Free Beacon that the group could face fines ranging from $25 dollars to $25,000 for violating their state’s charity laws. Some of those fines could be issued for each donation the group accepts.
According to Paul Kamenar, an attorney with the National Legal and Policy Center, the group could soon face more trouble.
“It’s clear that the New Georgia Project is in gross violation of many state laws by soliciting contributions from the public while their registration as a charity has lapsed,” Kamenar told the Free Beacon, noting that his group “plans to file formal complaints with appropriate state enforcement agencies demanding an investigation and imposition of penalties.”
Touted as the “poster child” of Abrams’s efforts to boost Democrats in the state, the New Georgia Project raised $25 million in 2020 and ended the year with $18.5 million in assets, according to the last available public records. Less than two years later, in October 2022, the charity once helmed by Sen. Raphael Warnock (D., Ga.) dismissed half its leadership team, citing a lack of funds. The group’s implosion comes just as Democrats have begun making inroads in Georgia, a feat often attributed to Abrams’s efforts.