For Immediate Release: Monday, January 9, 2012
Media Contact: Jeff Harris, Indiana State AFL-CIO, 317.632.9147
GOVERNOR CONTINUES TO REFUSE TO DISCLOSE DONORS, SHOW PROOF OF CLAIMS IN TV ADS
Pressure mounts on Daniels as more Hoosiers demand answers
INDIANAPOLIS – For seven days, Governor Mitch Daniels has refused to publicly disclose who is funding the barrage of television ads being aired around the state promoting his partisan right to work for less agenda, and has been unable to verify any of the claims in those commercials.
"It’s outrageous that Governor Daniels who likes to brag about being ‘transparent’ refuses to tell taxpaying Hoosiers who is secretly funding his attacks on their collective bargaining rights, nor is he willing to provide evidence to back up the claims he is making in these spots,” said Indiana State AFL-CIO President Nancy Guyott. "It is hypocritical and is a stain on his legacy.”
Jim Bopp, a Republican Party activist, filed the paperwork for a group called the "Indiana Opportunity Fund," but both he and Daniels have refused to disclose who is funding the group, saying it qualifies as a "social welfare" organization under IRS rules. Thus far the group has spent more than $600,000 on its media campaign.
“Every Hoosier should be asking themselves ‘what is Governor Daniels hiding?’” Guyott continued. “His refusal to release his secret funders, his rush to ram through this divisive legislation without holding public hearings across the state, and his alarming failure to publicly name a single business that would not locate to Indiana shows that he’s more interested in advancing a national right-wing agenda than representing Hoosiers.”
A growing number of independent groups as well as newspaper editorial boards have begun calling on Daniels to release his secret donors. The Lafayette Journal & Courier, recently editorialized, “We understand you're hesitant to push the group calling itself the Indiana Opportunity Fund to reveal who is putting up the money for the right-to-work message. We can guess who might have an interest in the aggressive, pro-business stance you outline in the spot -- who would want a law that keeps workers from being compelled to pay union dues. But we don't know, and you're not saying.”
“This is a major public policy debate and its outcome will have wide-ranging impacts on millions of Hoosiers, and this is no way to do it,” added Guyott. “Once again, we call on Governor Daniels to do the right thing and release his secret donors to the public and to provide proof to back up the claims made in these ads. Hoosiers taxpayers deserve no less than full disclosure.”
The Indiana State AFL-CIO (American Federation of Labor and Congress of Industrial Organizations) is a federation of 800 local unions across the state belonging to 50 International Unions. In total, the Indiana State AFL-CIO represents more than 300,000 working Hoosiers.
For more information on please visit www.inaflcio.org or call 1-800-433-8423.