IRS reinstates Richard Spencer's tax-dodging white supremacist think tank as a non-profit

Nonetheless, on July 12, the IRS reinstated the non-profit status of the sham of an organization that seeks to justify its violent hatred of non-white people with manipulated data. Spencer, who’d previously characterized the revocation as “persecution” rather than the result of his organization’s own errors, tells the Associated Press that he got the good news in late August. 

Founded in 2005 by wealthy racist William H. Regnery II, the NPI describes its “mission” as aiming “to elevate the consciousness of whites, ensure our biological and cultural continuity, and protect our civil rights. The institute … will study the consequences of the ongoing influx that non-Western populations pose to our national identity.”

Though the most recent tax forms available are three years old or older, they indicate that the NPI doesn’t actually raise very much money, and often operates at an annual net loss. The Associated Press paints a similar picture.

The National Policy Institute raised $697,267 in tax-deductible contributions from 2007 through 2015, according to an AP tally.

That’s an average of $77,474.11 per year; tax documents allocate most of the funds raised to conferences, book-publishing, and maintenance of the NPI website, all exploring “social, cultural, and scientific” matters and issues. 

Funny way of saying “justifying and spreading the violent hatred of white supremacy,” but hey, as University of Pittsburgh School of Law professor Philip Hackney told the Associated Press, the NPI’s exempt status likely didn’t face much scrutiny.

(H)e doubts the IRS reevaluated whether Spencer’s nonprofit deserves to be classified as a charitable organization before reinstating its tax-exempt status.

“My guess is probably there is no judgment being made,” he said.

Hackney said nonprofits typically don’t find it difficult to get reinstated after automatically losing tax-exempt status.

“There can be some hoops to jump through that can be a pain, but it’s not super hard,” he said.

For what it’s worth, Spencer whines that losing access to payment processors like PayPal and Square, after the brutal violence of 2017’s Unite the Right rally in Charlottesville, has had a far more lasting impact on the NPI’s bottom line than the temporary loss of 501(c)3 status. He said, “Most people who donate don’t actually take the deduction.”

Keep making it hard for the racists, even if the government seems devoted to making things easier. It’s working.

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