News From Terre Haute, Indiana

Indiana Legislature

January 10, 2012

Bopp backs labor law ads

TH attorney refutes charges from AFL-CIO

TERRE HAUTE — Terre Haute attorney James Bopp Jr. has helped spearhead a political lobbying fund to pay for televisions ads advocating passage of a contentious right-to-work bill in the Indiana General Assembly.

It’s called the Indiana Opportunity Fund, which Bopp filed paperwork for in December.

The AFL-CIO has also run television ads, and based on information from media buyers, Indiana Opportunity Fund has spent more than $316,500 this month on a media campaign. Indiana State AFL-CIO spokesman Jeff Harris alleges the spending was done so without disclosing its funding backers.

Bopp said Monday the fund is a 501(c)(4) organization and under Internal Revenue Service rules, donations are not publicly disclosed.

“This is lobbying. It is not subject to campaign finance rules,” Bopp said. “This is perfectly proper, because by law, contributions to a lobby group are confidential. As the Supreme Court said in the late 1940s, disclosure of the members and supporters of a private organization will undermine its ability to raise funds and be effective advocates, particularly if it’s controversial.”

Harris said the AFL-CIO thinks “it is a way that large out-of-state corporations and special interest groups can dump in unlimited amounts of money and no one will know about it. The governor has always talked about transparency, with his Aiming Higher Inc. group. This is a pretty big departure from that. He has been asked who has contributed and has flatly refused.”

The AFL-CIO operates under the advocacy group, “A Working Person Like You,” which has also been airing commercials in Indianapolis and elsewhere. It has spend about $200,000 this month, Harris said.

“This is a pretty major public policy debate. We have disclosed all of our donors to our commercials and we feel it is only right that people know who is trying to influence this public policy decision and why,” Harris said.

“It is a grassroots lobbying campaign to urge Hoosiers to support right-to-work legislation,” Bopp contends of Indiana Opportunity Fund. “All they have to do is look at the commercial and they see the governor supporting right-to-work. He lives in Indiana,” Bopp said. “He is the messenger.”

Bopp contends the AFL-CIO has also not fully disclosed its donors.

“They don’t reveal their contributors. All they report is various labor unions contributing to the funds. Well, labor unions don’t have a money tree. They get the money from somebody and they are not saying who they get the money from,” Bopp said.

Bopp is a member of the National Republican Committee, has done legal work for the National Right to Work Legal Defense and Education Foundation, and served as general counsel for the Mitch for Governor Committee, starting in 2003.

The Indiana State AFL-CIO (American Federation of Labor and Congress of Industrial Organizations) is a federation of 800 unions statewide, which belong to 50 international unions. The state AFL-CIO represents more than 300,000 Hoosiers.

Howard Greninger can be reached at (812) 231-4204 or howard.greninger@tribstar.com.

1
Text Only | Photo Reprints
Indiana Legislature
Latest News
TribStar.com Poll
AP Video
Kerry: Humanitarian Cease-fire Efforts Continue Raw: Corruption Trial Begins for Former Va Gov. Raw: Massive Dust Storm Covers Phoenix UN Security Council Calls for Gaza Cease-fire 13 Struck by Lightning on Calif. Beach Baseball Hall of Famers Inducted Raw: Shipwrecked Concordia Completes Last Voyage The Carbon Trap: US Exports Global Warming Israel, Hamas Trade Fire Despite Truce in Gaza Raw: Sea Turtle Hatchlings Emerge From Nest Traditional African Dishes Teach Healthy Eating Raw: Bolivian Dancers Attempt to Break Record Italy's Nibali Set to Win First Tour De France Raw: Airstrike Shatters Fragile Calm in Gaza Fox Dons 'Bondage Strap' Skirt at Comic-Con Raw: Violent Clashes Between Libyan Militias Today in History for July 28th Kangaroo Goes Missing in Oklahoma 12-hour Cease-fire in Gaza Fighting Begins Raw: Israel, Palestine Supporters Rally in US
NDN Video
'Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1' Sneak Peek GMA: Dog passes out from excitment to see owner Chapter Two: Designing for Naomi Watts Baseball Hall of Famers Inducted Florida Keys Webcam Captures Turtles Hatching Morgan Freeman Sucks Down Helium on 'Tonight Show' Robin Wright Can Dance! (WATCH) She's Back! See Paris Hilton's New Carl's Jr. Ad Big Weekend For Atlanta Braves In Cooperstown - @TheBuzzeronFox Chapter Two: Becoming a first-time director What's Got Jack Black Freaking Out at Comic-Con? Doctors Remove 232 Teeth From Teen's Mouth Bradley Cooper Explains His Voice in 'Guardians of the Galaxy' Deja vu: Another NYPD officer choke-holding a suspect 'Fifty Shades of Grey': Watch the Super Sexy First Trailer Now! Reports: Ravens RB Ray Rice Suspended For 1st 2 Games Of The Season Air Algerie plane with 119 on board missing over Mali Diamond Stone, Malik Newman, Josh Jackson and others showcase talent Free Arturo - The World's Saddest Polar Bear A Look Back at Batman On Film Through The Years
Parade
Magazine

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.
  • -

     

    March 12, 2010

activity