January 28, 2004, 9:00 a.m.
Recipients of Heinz Money Making Strong Kerry Pitch
By Christopher Horner http://www.nationalreview.com/comment/horner200401280900.asp
On January 24, before the first vote was cast in New Hampshire's Democratic primary, the League of Conservation Voters (LCV) endorsed Senator John Kerry (D., Mass.) for president. Weeks earlier, in an entirely unrelated matter, the Heinz Family Foundation provided an "unrestricted-use" grant of a quarter million dollars to a group represented on the LCV board.
Senator Kerry is married to the very wealthy Teresa Heinz Teresa Heinz Kerry in this campaign year who also sits on the board of numerous foundation and advocacy groups. For example, she chairs the board of trustees of the one half of the Heinz Family Foundation (the Howard Heinz Endowment), and sits on the board of the other half (the Vira I. Heinz Endowment).
The tax-exempt advocacy group LCV is expressly nonpartisan. Regardless, the top half of its website's home page is dedicated to the endorsement of Senator Kerry. The bottom half of this page is dedicated to attacking the president's State of the Union speech, the Environmental Protection Agency, and the Bush administration in general.
Other groups supported by Heinz largesse include Environmental Defense, which, according to the Capital Research Center, received nearly $1.5 million from various Heinz foundations between 1995 and 2000. CRC cites Ted Turner's Tides Foundation a clearinghouse for foundations to funnel money to radical groups with a degree of separation as receiving well over $2 million from Heinz foundations over the same period. Other repeat beneficiaries include the Brookings Institution and the Earth Island Institute.
The latter is a remarkable case study in what is funded by America's elites, the Heinzes included. EII is best known for its September 14, 2001, statement on its website, "U.S. Responds to Terrorist Attacks with Self-Righteous Arrogance." (Though EII removed the piece from its site, you may still view it on CEI's.)
Steeped in self-righteous arrogance itself, the screed insists that the September 11 attacks were not an act of war; EII sheds a tear instead for these oppressed peoples communicating their anger at the root cause of a capitalist, globalist society the only way they knew how. Theirs "was an act of anger, desperation and indignation," reasoned the Heinz-funded EII. "This was not an 'attack on all American people.'" You see, mostly Pentagon and "multinational-financial-empire" types died, making the attack "not the sort of flat-out terrorism that targets random innocents at a disco or a beach."
So, Senator Kerry is married to an elitist whose radical pet projects occasionally get off the leash. That is hardly news. It is fair to anticipate over the coming months, however, that each of these Heinz-funded groups will coincidentally make its own pitch for a Kerry presidency, though possibly not as fawningly as LCV. If it's too overt, you see, it gives the appearance of employing taxpayer-subsidized wealth to influence elections.
The various Heinz outfits have written checks to LCV for some years now. With no apparent sense of irony, LCV's website also quotes from the hard-left American Prospect: "Teresa Heinz widow of ketchup heir Sen. John Heinz (R., Penn.) and Kerry's wife since 1995 is worth an estimated three-quarters of a billion, and Kerry has not been shy about dipping into that fortune when he's had to."
In Kerry's pursuit of the presidency, however, initial FEC comments indicated that Ms. Heinz's fortune is off-limits to his campaign. Typically, rules allow a candidate to utilize one-half of jointly held assets and even the entirety of jointly held bank accounts. Heinz-Kerry-to-Kerry transfers, however, would fall outside the permissible $2,000 individual-donation cap unless they could be demonstrated as part of a pattern of giving that predated his candidacy.
It is on this basis that the campaign sought early on to preempt questions of his wife's wealth which also reminds voters why Kerry's populism rings rather tinny and staged by claiming her money is off-limits. Her ability to direct money, however, even to otherwise permissible causes, is still subject to criticism should it appear designed to influence the election. A quid pro quo involving a tax-exempt organization, if it could be proved, would be impermissible at any time not just in a campaign season.
Like Pew, Rockefeller, Ford, and others, the family of Heinz foundations and advocacy groups are merely more in a sadly growing list of endowments dedicated to financing agendas that, if they'd held sway at an earlier date, would have precluded amassing the original fortunes. Whatever the motivation of Teresa Kerry, the League of Conservation Voters, and other left-leaning pressure groups, voters and the FEC would be wise to recall at all times the Heinz connection when these "independent" voices make their political desires known.
Christopher Horner is a senior fellow at the Competitive Enterprise Institute.
To: Kangaroo Court
Consider Hormel foods also, Rampa Hormel, the wife of the Hormel owner is on that League of Conservation Voters (LCV)listed above that endorsed the Beacon Hill boy.
posted on 04/15/2004 12:59:39 PM PDT
To: Kangaroo Court
Too much envy is in this article: why call Heinz elitist --- she is not. She is a leftist.
The question is, why did a Republican senator marry her?
posted on 04/15/2004 4:17:27 PM PDT
To: Kangaroo Court
The Truth About Heinz and Tides
A statement from Heinz Endowments President Maxwell King.
In recent weeks, The Heinz Endowments has been accused of using its funding of the Tides Center of Western Pennsylvania to advance a laundry list of partisan causes and fringe political groups. This accusation is simply wrong.
It originated in an opinion column written by a researcher for the conservative, Washington, D.C.-based Capital Research Center. The crux of CRCs argument is that money directed by the Endowments to Tides is "fungible." By supporting projects through Tides, CRC alleged that Heinz has secretly funneled money to every other organization that has ever received funding through Tides Center and the separate Tides Foundation.
Since first being published in the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, CRCs accusation has been picked up and expanded in opinion pieces in a number of newspapers, including the Wall Street Journal, the New York Post and the Washington Times. But not even these publications have leveled this allegation in actual news stories.
The reason why is obvious: The charge does not stand up to objective scrutiny. Four facts undercut it completely. First, by legally binding contract, every penny of Heinzs support to Tides has been explicitly directed to specific projects in Pennsylvania. It cannot legally be redirected and is the exact opposite of fungible.
Second, the Tides Center is a provider of management and administrative services, and we have used it only for those services, not to advance Tides grantmaking agenda. Foundations from all across the country-many, like Heinz, with strong centrist agendas-use these services to incubate an array of nonprofit programs. So does the federal government. It is no more accurate to suggest that Heinz supports every one of these programs than it is to suggest that someone who contributes to a specific group through the United Way supports the agenda of every other United Way beneficiary.
Third, the projects we have supported through Tides speak for themselves. They include programs to test the career readiness of area high school students, protect Pittsburghs environment and retain young people in our region-hardly an extremist agenda.
Fourth and finally, information about every one of our Tides-related grants is and always has been readily available in our public filings, annual reports and here on our web site. Far from being secretive, we have been consistently open in detailing the nature of our grants to Tides and every other organization we fund.
Throughout its 63-year history, The Heinz Endowments has scrupulously observed both the letter and the spirit of the law barring foundations from partisan activity. That hasnt changed. These accusations to the contrary are rooted in politics, not fact. They do a disservice to Howard Heinz Endowment chairman Teresa Heinz Kerry, whose stewardship of the Heinz familys generous philanthropic legacy has been exemplary, and to our 16 other board members and 31 staff. Together, we remain committed to upholding the high ethical standards and proud traditions of one of Americas most respected charitable foundations.
To learn more, please click on the links below:
A complete list of Heinz Endowments grants to Tides and the projects they supported; http://www.heinz.org/K.asp?loc=K,K2025&whr=c
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