Secretive conservative legal group funded by $17 million mystery donor before Kavanaugh fight - 2019-05-17
The conservative "dark money" organization that spearheaded controversial Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh's contentious confirmation received $22 million in anonymous donations in the year before the 2018 court fight, newly released tax records show.
The Judicial Crisis Network (JCN), a Washington, D.C.-based nonprofit, pledged to spend as much as $10 million to ensure Kavanaugh's confirmation — the same amount that it spent to help confirm Justice Neil Gorsuch in 2017. JCN has close ties to Trump's judicial adviser Leonard Leo, a longtime executive at the Federalist Society, the influential conservative and libertarian lawyers network based in Washington, D.C.
More than three-quarters of the funds JCN raised between July 2017 and June 2018 came in the form of a $17 million contribution from a single anonymous donor, according to its latest tax return, which was obtained by MapLight and OpenSecrets. Former Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy announced his retirement in June 2018, paving the way for Kavanaugh's nomination.
JCN's filing lists nine other anonymous contributions, none smaller than six figures.