Dark money has flooded into outside spending groups pledging support for Biden, including one out of every two dollars to the president’s primary super PAC.

by Donald Shaw, Sludge

In September 2022, President Joe Biden made a rare appearance in the White House Briefing Room to call on congressional Republicans to get behind a Democratic bill to end “dark money” in U.S. elections.

“Dark money erodes public trust,” Biden said. “We need to protect public trust. And I’m determined to do that.”

But that bill was never passed, and the Biden administration has not taken any meaningful actions to address the issue. For example, Democratic senators and a coalition of liberal groups have been urging Biden to begin addressing dark money in politics by issuing an executive order requiring federal contractors to disclose all of their political expenditures, but the president has not pursued the idea.

joe biden on black background

Now, Biden’s re-election campaign is set to benefit massively from dark money. At least $85 million has flooded in already this election cycle from nonprofits and shell companies that do not disclose their donors to super PACs that have pledged to spend money in support of Biden, according to Sludge’s review of Federal Election Commission records.

The main super PAC backing Biden in 2024, Future Forward, has committed to spending $250 million on digital and broadcast ads, beginning after the Democratic National Convention in August and focusing on seven key battleground states. Of the $58.9 million the super PAC has raised since January 2021, $28 million has come from dark money sources, or about half.

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