Today, FreedomWorks Foundation’s Regulatory Action Center (RAC) submitted a comment opposing the Justice Department’s plan to return to the practice of providing slush funds to activist groups as part of legal settlements. In its comment, the RAC argued that the practice is both unconstitutional and unethical. The Justice Department represents the taxpayers in these suits, and all monies received belong to the taxpayers. Under our Constitution, only Congress has the power to appropriate taxpayers’ money–no executive branch agency gets to decide where taxpayer dollars go. If a lawyer in private practice diverted part of his client’s recovery to a third party, that lawyer would be disbarred–and government attorneys must adhere to the same ethical standards as attorneys in private practice.
For these reasons, the Trump administration had put a stop to this practice. Elections have consequences, but stealing from the taxpayers to fund activist groups should not be one of them.