Wednesday, March 30

Googling for Jesus OR Womenfolk?!?

John Altevogt, a conservative GOP activist from Wyandotte County, also welcomed Coulter. "Ann Coulter is logical, rational and an independent thinker," he said. "In essence, everything the left hates in their womenfolk."

John Altevogt

To stymie political group, opponents seize its name 9-20-2004 After a decade of battling with Mainstream Coalition, a nonprofit with the goal of keeping church and state seperate, Altevogt took matters into his own hands and incorporated their name for $40. The original group was formed by Johnson County residents(Topeka, KS) that were fed up with bullshit, social conservatism in their state. They are pro-choice and pro-gay, so naturally, they were called a "hate group akin to the Ku Klux Klan" by Mr. Altevogt.
Drug Industry Financing Fuels Pro-GOP TV Spots 10-23-2002 Pro-Republican, business-financed groups such as the United Seniors Association and Americans for Job Security are putting up $17 million and $6 million, respectively, dwarfing the roughly $3 million budgets of the Sierra Club and NARAL, which generally favor Democrats. One new organization that declined to reveal its funding sources -- the Council for Better Government, headed by Republican activist, John Altevogt -- has spent about $1 million for ads on black radio stations urging African Americans to consider voting Republican. Big Spender 10-3-2003 John Altevogt was the head of the Council for Better Government, a 527 group that recieved $1.25 million dollars from the Republican Leadership Coalition in 2003. He used the money to run radio and television ads in 12 states that challened Democratic policies. The ads were directed at minority voters.

From The Note (ABC News): Our attention was called to a series of radio ads broadcast on predominantly black radio stations throughout the Midwest. The spots urge black voters to give the Republican Party a new look and feature discussions of faith based initiatives, Social Security, 401 (k) expansions, home ownership, school vouchers, and other topics. The tag line comes quickly at the end: "Paid For By the Council for Better Government." Though the ads appear to be straightforward, one Democratic reader wrote to us to say he was offended by the insinuation at the Democratic Party took African Americans for granted. To be sure, that's a charge that many Democrats lob at their own party. And Republican political entrepreneurs really do want to increase the appeal of their party, sometimes for political reasons but often because they sincerely believe that Republican issues yoke with the hopes and dreams of African Americans. In one of the ads, a woman narrator complains that:

"Every year, some white Democratic politician says he's going to make black schools work … .he's going to Washington to set high standards; he's going to Washington to teach our kids to read … and year by year the test score gap between the black and white students remains." And: "Republicans favor school choice; under the Republican plan, we parents choose the schools our kids attend … If our neighborhood school has drugs or gangs or bad academics, we'll send our kids somewhere better. That's not stealing from public schools. That's taking care of family business. And that's why I support the Republicans. And I ask the white Democrats: What's wrong with black parents choosing schools for black children. Do you have a problem with that?" So who is this Council for Better Government? What are their motives? Who funds them? Google and Nexus didn't help, so we checked with the IRS's 527 filings. Sure enough, there's a Council for Better Government registered to a John Altevogt of Edwardsville, Kansas. The group very recently filed for 527 status for the purpose of "political communications through radio and television." It did not exist until September 12 of this year. Altevogt, a masters-level sociologist and a former Associate Vice Chair of the Kansas Republican State Committee, has written extensively on reaching out to the black community. "I was reasonably successful in having minority outreach programs when I was the chair of [a county party,]" he said in an interview. "Why is it a concern, basically from Democratic groups, that we talk about issues in the minority community? Do they not want us to present both sides of the story?" Altevogt said the ads would eventually run in 15 states. He declined to disclose the source of his funding, but he denied any coordination with the Republican Party. "I am me. I am not coordinated with anyone," he said.

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