Opinion

Ocasio-Cortez Says Lincoln Project Has Entered ‘Scam Territory’

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Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez accused the Lincoln Project of wasting millions of dollars in political contributions it received in the 2020 election cycle, and urged the anti-Trump Republican super PAC to give its remaining funds to liberal groups.

Ocasio-Cortez, a New York progressive, said that the Lincoln Project had entered “scam territory” after Republicans’ better-than-expected showing in the general election.

The Lincoln Project, which was founded by several so-called “Never Trump” Republicans, has received more than $67 million in the 2020 election cycle and spent $59 million through Oct. 14, according to FEC records.

More than half of the expenditures went to two media and consulting firms owned by Lincoln Project co-founders Reed Galen and Ron Steslow, campaign finance records show.

The group has spent heavily on ads targeting President Donald Trump and a group of incumbent Senate Republicans.

While Trump lost his re-election bid, the race was closer than many polls predicted and than Democrats hoped. All of the Senate Republicans targeted by the Lincoln Project have either won their re-election bids or are leading heavily in their races as of Saturday.

Critics of the Lincoln Project have accused its founders of padding their own pockets.

According to the Center for Responsive Politics, which tracks political spending, the super PAC has paid more than $24 million to Summit Strategic Communications, a consulting firm owned by Galen. Another $17 million has been paid to TUSK Digital, which is owned by Steslow.

“It’s not too late for them to do the right thing,” Ocasio Cortez tweeted Friday in reference to the Lincoln Project.

She was responding to a progressive activist Benjamin Dixon’s tweet claiming that the Lincoln Project squandered the $67 million in contributions it received during the 2020 election cycle. Dixon asserted that the Lincoln Project’s tactics did not help Democrats.

He said that black political organizers who helped Biden “are short on rent this month.”

Ocasio-Cortez suggested that Lincoln Project should “publicly pledge to give a lot of their fundraising to the people who actually made a difference.”

According to the Center for Responsive Politics, Lincoln Project spent $33 million in opposition to Trump and $2 million on ads supporting Joe Biden.

The super PAC also spent $2.5 million on ads against South Carolina Sen. Lindsey Graham, $1.7 million against Maine Sen. Susan Collins and more than $4 million against Alaska Sen. Dan Sullivan.

Graham and Collins both won their races by around 10 points, while Sullivan leads his opponent, Al Gross, by 30 percentage points, according to the New York Times.

Lincoln Project also spent $2.7 million supporting former Montana Gov. Steve Bullock against incumbent Republican Sen. Steve Daines.

Daines won the race by 10 points.

By Chuck Ross

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