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IRS Complaint Filed Against NOM And Witherspoon In Regnerus Anti-Gay Study Scandal

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We have been reporting on an invalid sociological study on gay parenting carried out by researcher Mark Regnerus of the University of Texas, Austin.

Regnerus’s known total of $785,000 for the study was arranged by The Witherspoon Institute and The Bradley Foundation, where Robert P. George — head of the anti-gay-rights, scientifically disreputable National Organization for Marriage (NOM) — holds positions of authority. Witherspoon president Luis Tellez is a NOM board member.

Bradley and Witherspoon are organized as 501(c)3 tax exempt entities.

One arm of NOM, by contrast, is a 501(c)4 organization. NOM apparently would not have been legally able to fund the Regnerus study and to use it subsequently as a political weapon in the 2012 elections. Likewise, Bradley and Witherspoon as 501(c)3s charities are limited in the  extent of political involvement legally allowed them.

There thus is some appearance that the Regnerus study money could have been political money, laundered for NOM through Bradley and Witherspoon — (with the money perhaps laundered coming from as-yet-unidentified donors) — even though the Regnerus study was schemed up above all for NOM and Republican Party uses as a political weapon in the 2012 elections.

The appearance is that as a NOM proxy — and as a loophole in the differences between what is legally allowed to 501(c)3s and to 501(c)4s — Bradley/Witherspoon funded the Regnerus study for NOM — with laundered money — for a known minimum of $785,000.

Accordingly, a 501(c)3 tax exempt laws violations COMPLAINT has been filed with the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), against Bradley, Witherspoon and NOM.

The IRS handles such complaints, firstly, by sending the complainant a letter acknowledging receipt of the COMPLAINT.

The body of the COMPLAINT text appears below. The actual communication sent to the IRS included such information as NOM’s and Witherspoon’s addresses. The COMPLAINT noted that NOM and Witherspoon formerly shared the address of 20 Nassau Street, Suite 242, Princeton, New Jersey 08542.  The COMPLAINT text below is identical to the actual COMPLAINT text sent to the IRS, though hyperlinks have been inserted for online readers’ ease of reference.

NATURE OF VIOLATION(S)

1)       Organization is involved in a political campaign
2)      Organization is engaged in excessive lobbying activities
3)      Organization engaged in deceptive or improper fundraising practices
4)      Income/assets are being used to support illegal or terrorist activities

The central allegation is that The Bradley Foundation (“Bradley”)  and The Witherspoon Institute (“Witherspoon”), both 501(c)(3) tax exempt organizations, laundered money for political projects for — and/or of — The National Organization for Marriage, which is a 501(c)4 political advocacy organization subject to tax laws different from those pertaining for 501(c)3 organizations.

The central alleged tax law violation involves The Bradley Foundation’s and the Witherspoon Institute’s financing of the “New Family Structures Study” (“the Study”), a sociological study carried out by the University of Texas at Austin’s Mark Regnerus, who made use of  publicly-funded UT facilities in carrying out his study.

The Study could apparently not legally have been funded by NOM, and then later used by NOM as a political weapon in the 2012 elections. Furthermore, Bradley and Witherspoon apparently could not legally have funded such a study and then subsequently have promoted it as heavily as NOM is doing, in political contexts in the 2012 elections.

There is an appearance that NOM officials who also have official positions with Bradley and Witherspoon knowingly subverted the letter and spirit of tax laws applying to 501(c)3 organizations compared to 501(c)4 organizations, in order to further political goals shared by those same NOM, Bradley and Witherspoon officials and their corresponding, common organizations. The appearance is that as a NOM proxy — and as a loophole in the differences between what is legally allowed to 501(c)3s and to 501(c)4s — Bradley/Witherspoon funded the Regnerus study for NOM — with laundered money — for a known minimum of $785,000.

The Study, as happens, has been very heavily, politically weaponized and promoted by both the Study funder Witherspoon and NOM jointly, and in political contexts. Witherspoon created a stand-alone website for the Study. Most all propagandistic and weaponized political articles involving the Study and published on one of Witherspoon’s various websites are rapidly cross-posted to NOM’s blog. NOM and Witherspoon officials have been using various media venues to promote the weaponized Study. The National Review is one example of a venue being used that way by NOM and/or Witherspoon officials as well as by Regnerus himself. An article about Regnerus in The Weekly Standard described Witherspoon as having orchestrated a “careful rollout” of the study. Whereas the study was not made available to the public pre-publication — (though it had for months already been approved for publication) – articles and editorials supporting it notably appeared early in print in The Deseret News, where Witherspoon/Bradley/NOM’s Robert George is on the editorial advisory board.

The Bradley Foundation is known to have provided general financial support to The Witherspoon Institute in the past. Robert George, a NOM founder and its current mastermind, is a Bradley Foundation board member. Robert George also is a senior fellow of the Witherspoon Institute. Witherspoon president Luis Tellez is a NOM board member.

The Bradley Foundation gave a known minimum grant of $90,000 for the Regnerus study. The Witherspoon Institute gave a known minimum $55,000 “planning grant” for the Regnerus study. It is presumed that Witherspoon had an option not to fund the full Study upon consideration of Regnerus’s presented study plan. Total known minimum funding for the Regnerus study is $785,000.

NOM is very heavily invested, and involved in the 2012 elections nationwide. NOM and/or its various state affiliates are involved in 1) the 2012 presidential campaign; 2) congressional and senatorial campaigns on both the national and state levels; 3) campaigns involving candidates for other elected offices and; 4) campaigns involving state ballot initiatives.

Most of NOM’s political campaigns rely to no small extent on demonizing homosexuals based on known falsifications of scientific records. NOM, for example, demonizes homosexuals by quoting works by Paul Cameron, who in the 1980s was expelled from multiple professional organizations because of his documented falsifications of scientific records.

The Regnerus study is widely considered a falsified scientific record. Though the Study has the form of a test-group, control-group comparison study, it makes no apparently valid comparison between its test-group/control-group, yet is said by Regnerus and its funders to have “proved” that gay parents have worse child outcomes than do heterosexual parents.

The study was published by Elsevier’s journal Social Science Research, through an apparently corrupt peer review process, in which none of the peer reviewers were topic experts. Some of the peer reviewers had conflicts of interest, including that some were paid Regnerus study consultants, while others had long-standing personal associations with Regnerus.

A group of over 200 Ph.D.s and M.D.s sent a letter to Social Science Research, complaining of the Study’s lack of intellectual integrity and expressing concerns about the suspicious circumstances of the Study’s publication. The signers of that letter noted: “there are substantial concerns about the merits of this paper, and these concerns should have been identified through a thorough and rigorous peer review process.”

Additionally, a group of eight major professional associations including the American Medical Association filed an amicus brief in the Golinski-DOMA case, analyzing the Regnerus study as scientifically invalid.

Moreover, Witherspoon officials with conflicts of interest in commenting publicly about the Regnerus study have been making attempted defenses of the Study without disclosing their conflicts of interest. For example, Witherspoon senior fellow Byron Johnson is Director of the Baylor Institute for Religious Studies. Johnson organized a group of 18 to sign an attempted public defense of the Regnerus study. The attempted defense, however, does not even attempt to rebut the coherent and decisive scientific criticisms of the Study. And, Johnson does not disclose that he is senior fellow of Witherspoon, which funded the Regnerus study and is busy heavily promoting it politically, jointly with NOM.  Johnson furthermore did not disclose that Regnerus himself has a Baylor affiliation.

NOM’s main — (but hardly sole) — purposes are to bar LGBT Americans from being treated as legal equals, and not only in marriage law, despite NOM’s name. NOM’s Maggie Gallagher, for example, has published articles saying that she is “unwilling” to live in a country that grants anti-discrimination protections of any sort to homosexuals. NOM issued a “pledge” signed by all major Republican presidential candidates including Mitt Romney. Romney made a secret $10,000 donation to NOM through an Alabama PAC; that secret donation now is the subject of an ethics investigation being undertaken by the State of California.

In March, 2012, NOM earned public condemnation and revulsion when some of its internal strategy documents were released through court order. Those documents described plots to get children raised by gay parents to denounce their parents on camera, as well as plots to “drive a wedge” and to “fan hostility” between various minority groups, including between African-Americans and gays. NOM also is known to fan hostility against Muslims and Jews; the Bradley Foundation has a reputation for funding extremist anti-Muslim bigots. NOM sponsors hate rallies where NOM-approved speakers yell at crowds through megaphones that homosexuals are “worthy to death.” NOM’s William Duncan leads hateful seminars with titles such as “Homosexuals or Homo Sapiens: Who Deserves Protected Class Status?”

Witherspoon and NOM have been using the Regnerus study in association with their fund raising, and political fund raising campaigns. They appear to be using at least some of the money thus raised for terroristic activities.

NOM, for example, launched a boycott of Starbucks because of that company’s support for gay rights. NOM had its Starbucks boycott materials with anti-gay hate speech translated into foreign languages including Arabic, and languages of other countries where gay people face overt hostility and even death, merely for being found out as homosexual. With depraved indifference to the plight of homosexual people in such countries, NOM published its anti-gay hate speech and Starbucks boycott materials, along with detailed Starbucks location maps for such countries as Saudi Arabia. Additionally, in its Starbucks boycott materials, NOM overtly highlights that the Starbucks CEO has a conspicuously and readily identifiably Jewish surname; Howard Schultz. There is some appearance that NOM is attempting to associate Jews, gay rights and Starbucks in the minds of people in Saudi Arabia, to build resentment. The resulting heightened danger to both gay people in Saudi Arabia, and Starbucks physical plants as well as employees there should be obvious. In this connection, it should be noted that the Regnerus study has been translated into many foreign languages and published online. The scientifically invalid Regnerus study’s bottom line – that homosexuals are dangerous to children – echoes other falsified scientific records that Witherspoon/NOM previously have used to demonize homosexuals in political contexts. Note that the SPLC’s 2012 Intelligence Report on NOM is titled National Organization for Marriage Continues to Spread Lies About Gays.

Moreover, Witherspoon and NOM officials have known connections to American evangelicals and others who travel abroad, including to Africa, to hate-monger against homosexuals. One place where such NOM-linked anti-homosexual hate mongering is connected to terrorism is Uganda, whose government proposed a “Kill the gays” law in reaction to the American evangelical-led anti-gay hate mongering. Ugandan tabloids began publishing names and addresses of known homosexuals and calling for their executions. Executions of homosexuals were carried out. Alarmed by that situation, California Congressman Brad Sherman proposed a congressional resolution against Uganda’s violation of its homosexual citizens’ human rights.

Bradley/Witherspoon/NOM’s Robert George was involved with an attempt to block Congressman Sherman’s proposed humane congressional resolution. Here is how:

George is a board member of the Family Research Council, a Southern Poverty Law Center-certified anti-gay hate group. The SPLC classifies a group as a hate group when it repeatedly disseminates known falsehoods against a minority.

Bradley/Witherspoon/NOM’s Robert George’s Family Research Council spent a known minimum of $35,000 lobbying against the proposed congressional resolution against Uganda’s inhumane treatment of its homosexual citizens, on grounds that the congressional resolution constituted “pro-homosexual promotions.” Thus it is clear that these hate groups would rather see innocent gay people killed than to speak up in the gay victims’ defense. That demonstrated, depraved attitude should be kept in mind by those evaluating NOM’s intent in translating its Starbucks boycott materials into such languages as Arabic and publishing them together with detailed online maps of every Starbucks location in Saudi Arabia.

In various states, NOM is in the courts fighting charges of campaign finance law violations. In California, where NOM has connections to —  among other political entities — “ProtectMarriage.com” and “Yes on 8” — campaign finance law violation complaints were filed by Republican presidential candidate Fred Karger, with California’s Fair Political Practices Commission. The aforementioned NOM-linked entities admitted to 18 counts of violating campaign finance laws, and want to settle by paying $49,000 in fines. The Fair Political Practices Commission has not yet decided whether to accept a settlement.

The central allegation of this 501(c)3 tax exempt organization tax laws violation is now reiterated:

1)       The Bradley Foundation and the Witherspoon Institute are both 501(c)3s;
2)      The National Organization for Marriage is a 501(c)4;
3)      Robert George is; i) a Bradley board member; ii) a Witherspoon senior fellow; and iii) founder and mastermind of NOM;
4)      NOM had demonstrated 2012 election year political uses for a study that demonizes homosexuals;
5)      NOM as a 501(c)4 would not legally have been able to fund a study demonizing homosexuals and thereafter to use it as a political weapon in the 2012 elections;
6)      Bradley and NOM as 501(c)3s would not legally be able to fund a study demonizing homosexuals and thereafter to use it as a political weapon in the 2012 elections;
6)      As a NOM proxy — and as a loophole in the differences between what is legally allowed to 501(c)3s and to 501(c)4s — Bradley/Witherspoon funded the Regnerus study with laundered money for a known minimum of $785,000;
7)      Witherspoon/NOM and Regnerus himself are busily promoting the weaponized Study in political terms, and in political and election year contexts

Various journalists have made Freedom of Information Act requests for documentation pertaining to the funding of the Regnerus study. All involved entities have refused to comply with those FOIA requests.

 

New York City-based novelist and freelance writer Scott Rose’s LGBT-interest by-line has appeared on Advocate.com, PoliticusUSA.com, The New York Blade, Queerty.com, Girlfriends and in numerous additional venues. Among his other interests are the arts, boating and yachting, wine and food, travel, poker and dogs. His “Mr. David Cooper’s Happy Suicide” is about a New York City advertising executive assigned to a condom account.

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News

Democrats Discredit GOP Claims on IVF as Republicans Try to Regain Ground After Fallout

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One week after the Alabama State Supreme Court ruled frozen human embryos are “children,” causing several medical institutions to pause their in-vitro fertilization (IVF) programs, Alabama and the GOP have seen tremendous nationwide anger, upset, and confusion from the left and the right over the decision, the Christian nationalist chief judge, and the Republican Party that set this in motion.

Now, GOP lawmakers and political groups are trying to regain ground after some Republicans quickly embraced the decision that, as White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre predicted Tuesday, would cause “exactly the type of chaos that we expected when the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade and paved the way for politicians to dictate some of the most personal decisions families can make.”

“As a reminder,” Jean-Pierre added, “this is the same state whose attorney general threatened to prosecute people who help women travel out of state to seek the care they need.”

President Joe Biden condemned the Alabama ruling: “The disregard for women’s ability to make these decisions for themselves and their families is outrageous and unacceptable.”

But U.S. Senator Tommy Tuberville (R-AL) cheered his state’s Supreme Court, while appearing to not fully grasp what IVF is.

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“I was all for it,” he said of the Alabama Supreme Court ruling, calling young people “our number one commodity.”

But when pressed, Tuberville declared, “I’d have to look at the entire bill, how it’s written, I have not seen it,” referring not to legislation but the ruling.

And when told that women will now not be able to have IVF treatments, Tuberville repeatedly replied it was “unfortunate.”

On Thursday night, speaking to a group of religious broadcasters, Donald Trump denounced the Alabama ruling and vowed to protect IVF. On Friday, the beleaguered Chair of the National Republican Senatorial Committee (NRSC) issued a memo directing Republicans to defend IVF. Also Friday, the Attorney General for the state of Alabama, mentioned earlier by the White House Press Secretary, effectively suggested he would ignore the state supreme court’s ruling, promising to not prosecute IVF families, as ABC News reported.

But Democrats are making clear that despite whatever claims or promises Republicans make, the IVF ruling is the direction conservatives are taking the Republican Party.

READ MORE: Smirnov Scandal: Experts Call for Investigations, Warn GOP of Possible Conspiracy Charges

“First Republicans banned abortions so women couldn’t terminate a pregnancy. Now they are coming for IVF so women can’t begin a pregnancy. The GOP agenda is about one thing: government control of women,” observed U.S. Senator Chris Murphy (D-CT) (photo).

CNN congressional correspondent Lauren Fox reports a new NRSC memo “instructs [GOP] candidates to reject clearly and concisely government attempts to restrict access to IVF.”

Just hours later, Sen. Murphy responded, saying, “umm the chairman of the NRSC sponsored the bill to ban IVF.”

He added, “newsflash: no matter what they tell their candidates to pretend, when they get power they use it to control women.”

The NRSC’s goal is to help get Republicans elected to the U.S. Senate. It is chaired by Sen. Steve Daines of Montana, a MAGA Republican and member of the Senate’s Pro-Life Caucus.

As Bloomberg’s Matthew Yglesias notes, Senator Daines is an original co-sponsor of the Life at Conception Act.

The Center for American Progress’ Colin Seeberger adds, Daines “quite literally has been a longtime co-sponsor of the Lifetime at Conception Act, which would establish legal protections for the unborn just as the Alabama Supreme Court ordered and has led to the suspension of fertility care across AL.”

Meanwhile, Media Matters’ Matthew Gertz notes that the “text of GOP‘s most recent platform claims that ‘the unborn child has a fundamental right to life which cannot be infringed’ and calls for a constitutional amendment that would ban all abortions — and jeopardize IVF — by granting 14th Amendment rights to fetuses.”

READ MORE: Why Was GOP’s Star Witness Re-Arrested? He May Have Been Trying to Flee the Country: Report

Indeed, as The New York Times reported, far-right Christian conservative Tony Perkins, head of the Southern Poverty Law Center-designated anti-LGBTQ extremist group Family Research Council, called the Alabama Supreme Court ruling a “beautiful defense of life and the Alabama Constitution.”

Friday afternoon Donald Trump followed up his vow to protect IVF with a social media post that claims in part, “Under my leadership, the Republican Party will always support the creation of strong, thriving, healthy American families. We want to make it easier for mothers and fathers to have babies, not harder! That includes supporting the availability of fertility treatments like IVF in every State in America. Like the OVERWHELMING MAJORITY of Americans, including the VAST MAJORITY of Republicans, Conservatives, Christians, and Pro-Life Americans, I strongly support the availability of IVF for couples who are trying to have a precious baby.”

Former Obama senior advisor Dan Pfeiffer responded, asking: “Why would anyone believe this? In 2016, Trump pledged no cuts to Medicaid and then spent four years trying to gut the program.”

And as Axios reports, “House Democrats’ main super PAC is promising to pour money into attacking Republicans on fertility treatments in the wake of a controversial, first-of-its-kind Alabama Supreme Court ruling, Axios has learned.”

“Trump’s call came a day after President Biden’s re-election campaign blamed him for the ruling, noting his appointment of conservative justices to the Supreme Court, which overturned Roe v. Wade,” Axios adds. House Majority PAC, in a memo set to be released Friday, listed nearly a dozen current and former House Republicans in competitive districts who have co-sponsored at least one version of the Life at Conception Act between 2021 and 2023.”

See the social media posts and video above or at this link.

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Why Was GOP’s Star Witness Re-Arrested? He May Have Been Trying to Flee the Country: Report

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The re-arrest of Alexander Smirnov, the former FBI informant who allegedly may have provided House Republicans with Kremlin propaganda that was the basis for their efforts to impeach President Joe Biden and attack his son Hunter, raised some eyebrows on Thursday.

Smirnov, once considered House Republicans’ Jim Comer and Jim Jordan’s star witness, was re-arrested even after a magistrate judge ordered him released, and at his attorneys’ offices, raising eyebrows from even national security experts, insisting there had better be a good reason for it.

Now, according to a noted legal expert, it appears there was.

“A California judge seems to be suggesting [Smirnov’s] lawyers are complicit in his efforts to flee, in a remarkable line ordering detention for the FBI source whose lies propelled Biden impeachment efforts,” writes professor of law and MSNBC legal contributor Joyce Vance, a former U.S. Attorney.

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U.S. District Judge Otis D. Wright II in his order wrote on Thursday: “It has come to this Court’s attention that counsel for defendant has sought an emergency hearing in the District of Nevada to arrange the release of Defendant Smirnov, likely to facilitate his absconding from the United States.”

After detailing Smirnov’s arrest and release, Judge Wright ordered his re-arrest, adding: “The U.S. Marshal Service is advised there is to be no deviation from this Order.”

Just Security’s Adam Klasfeld calls Judge Wright’s order “wild,” and adds that Smirnoff’s lawyers released “a terse statement about the extraordinary order.”

“They did not respond to questions about the language in the judge’s order suggesting a ‘likely’ aim to ‘facilitate’ their client ‘absconding from the United States.'”

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News

Vaccine-Laced Lettuce and Tomatoes? Tennessee GOP Lawmaker Worried

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A Tennessee Republican state lawmaker says he’s worried Tennesseans might overdose on vaccines if they eat too many tomatoes.

State Rep. Scott Cepicky claims vaccines can already be added to foods like lettuce and tomatoes, and to tobacco products, so he has filed legislation to require grocery store items containing vaccines to be labeled.

“University of California Riverside has already perfected the ability to put human vaccines into our lettuce right now,” Rep. Cepicky told his fellow lawmakers Wednesday while discussing his legislation. “Also, tomatoes, has the ability to do that also per UC Berkeley. And then big tobacco, RJ Reynolds and stuff has perfected the ability to put a human vaccine in tobacco products.”

NCRM could find no evidence supporting his claims, although researchers starting in 2021 were studying if it is possible to do so.

Cepicky, who has been endorsed by U.S. Senator Marsha Blackburn (R-TN), warned, “there is no law, deeming those that when you go into a grocery store, you should know as a consumer, this head of lettuce is a head of lettuce. The head of lettuce right next week could contain a vaccine in it. All we’re saying is if it does have the vaccine in it, make sure it’s listed as a pharmaceutical so people can get the proper dosage.”

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Facing some pushback from Democratic Rep. John Ray Clemmons, Cepicky went on to say, “This is more of a consumer protection bill right here, is to make sure that if you’re going in to buy tomatoes, and there’s a polio vaccine in there, that you are aware of what you’re buying has a polio vaccine. The problem you have is if it’s not treated as a pharmaceutical, being the size and difference between you and me, how many tomatoes do I have to eat to get the proper dosage versus how many tomatoes that you have to eat? And if you eat too many do you get a overdose?”

Asked if his legislation was necessity, Cepicky added, “Well, if you’d have a child that is allergic to a certain vaccine, and it’s not disclosed, when you go to buy that, that vegetable, whatever it is, and your child dies from that, I would think that having place is going to make sure that that is treated as a pharmaceutical so that the consumers know exactly what they’re buying.”

Anti-vaxers gained a foothold during the COVID pandemic, spreading false claims about vaccines. Last year the fact-checking website Snopes deemed it “false” that “mRNA from COVID-19 vaccines has entered the food supply via genetically modified plants bred to contain it or through the consumption of vaccinated livestock.”

“Claims regarding COVID-19 vaccines ‘in your salad‘ have persisted on the internet and recirculated due to misreadings or misinterpretations of several press releases or scientific research,” Snopes added, “Mike Flynn, during a September 2021 podcast appearance, referenced this research, describing it as ‘putting the vaccine in salad dressing.'”

READ MORE: Kremlin Infiltration of Congress Alleged by Ex-Trump Prosecutor: Republicans ‘Duped or in on It’

Flynn, the former Trump U.S. national security advisor, is a far-right Christian nationalist and Trump MAGA activist.

Tennessee lawmakers voted to move Rep. Capicky’s forward.

Watch Rep. Capicky’s remarks below or at this link.

 

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