Who's the "Imposter"? Chris Koster or Nonprofit Behind Attack Ad?

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Missouri Attorney General Chris Koster cannot be trusted. That's the gist of a television ad entitled "The Imposter" that began airing last week across the state.

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The 30-second spot paid for by the Iowa-based American Future Fund claims that Koster "sided with DC politicians" and "refused to sue to stop the job-killing federal healthcare bill." A closer look at American Future Fund, however, may leave you wondering who the real "imposter" is.   

American Future Fund calls itself a conservative, free-market "advocacy group" which allows it to claim nonprofit status with the IRS as a "social welfare" agency or 501(c)(4). In reality, though, AFF behaves more like a political hired gun that can use its nonprofit status to sidestep federal election laws. 

Today nonprofits such as AFF, Crossroads GPS and Americans for Prosperity are upending campaign finance, spending even more money than super PACs on television ads for the 2012 election cycle. Moreover, nonprofits don't have to disclose their donors, the way that PACs must, allowing anonymous contributors to flood these "social welfare" groups with cash.

Shadier, still, is the way AFF went about registering as a "nonprofit." As ProPublica reported last month:

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America Future Fund was intended from the start to be a political action group. It was initially founded through donations from Republican activists in Iowa and remains an integral part of Iowa election dynamics, but has since gone national. Some estimates project its spending will top $25 million this election cycle. Their advertisements in Iowa have shown little interest in fact-based arguments. Shouldn't be a surprise that they are doing the same in Missouri.

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