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National Taxpayers Union

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This article is part of the Center for Media & Democracy's focus on the fallout of nuclear "spin."

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National Taxpayers Union (NTU) is closely related to their "501(c)(3)" (i.e. non-profit) foundation, the National Taxpayers Union Foundation (NTUF). According to the 990 forms of NTUF, the NTU and NTUF share staff, facilities, web site and board members.

Duane Parde, former Executive Director of the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC), is president of both the NTU and the NTUF. [1] NTU is also a member of ALEC.

The NTU received from Philip Morris in 1998 a donation of $25,000 ([1], WRO refers to Philip Morris's Washington Relations Office) and one year later $10,000. [2] The Tobacco Institute budgeted for 1999 also a donation to NTU of $10,000. [3]


Ties to the American Legislative Exchange Council

NTU President Duane Parde is former Executive Director of the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC), and NTU is an ALEC member.

ALEC is not a lobby; it is not a front group. It is much more powerful than that. Through ALEC, behind closed doors, corporations hand state legislators the changes to the law they desire that directly benefit their bottom line. Along with legislators, corporations have membership in ALEC. Corporations sit on all nine ALEC task forces and vote with legislators to approve “model” bills. They have their own corporate governing board which meets jointly with the legislative board. (ALEC says that corporations do not vote on the board.) They fund almost all of ALEC's operations. Participating legislators, overwhelmingly conservative Republicans, then bring those proposals home and introduce them in statehouses across the land as their own brilliant ideas and important public policy innovations—without disclosing that corporations crafted and voted on the bills. ALEC boasts that it has over 1,000 of these bills introduced by legislative members every year, with one in every five of them enacted into law. ALEC describes itself as a “unique,” “unparalleled” and “unmatched” organization. It might be right. It is as if a state legislature had been reconstituted, yet corporations had pushed the people out the door. Learn more at ALECexposed.org.

In a July 2011 interview with National Public Radio's Fresh Air, host Terry Gross asked ALEC National Chair Louisiana Rep. Noble Ellington: "But the corporations on who are represented have a lot of input in writing the legislation, in drafting it."

Ellington replied, in part: "It's not just corporations. I'm there, and members of ALEC is the Americans for Tax Reform, the National Taxpayers Union, National Federation of Independent Businesses - those are people that we represent as well and those are people who are members." [2]

In 1999, David M. Stanley was the chairman of NTU as well as Iowans for Tax Relief (ITR).[3] He has also been chairman of the Tax Education Support Foundation, a group affiliated with both NTU and ITR.[4] In 1996, the Tax Education Support Foundation loaned ALEC $100,000 "to support ALEC's exempt purpose."[5]

Additional tobacco industry information

A 1991 Philip Morris Communications presentation indicates the company's intent to utilize its coporate Contributions Program to develop NTU as a "strategic vehicle" to advance PM's corporate obejctives:


In 1992 Philip Morris funneled $50,000 to the NTU through the International Taxpayers Association. A memo about the donation written by Matthew Winokur, Director of Worldwide Tobacco Regulatory Issues for PM Europe, stated:

[This] represents the first opportunity PMI has had to support grass-roots opposition to excise taxes in key markets. Funds will be channeled through the National Taxpayers Union to sponsor a global tax meeting in Australia in November 1992 and an international tax congress planned for Prague in May of 1993. --PMI 1992 Corporate Contributions Budget [4]

A 1995 Philip Morris document that appears to be about fighting a proposed increase in a state excise tax (SET) on cigarettes, lists "501c(3) Organizations identified for outreach, who receive contributions." NTU appears on the list funded at $50,000. --SET SWOT Analysis 950000 [5]

In 1998 NTU got $25,000 from PM divided into two discrete contributions from 2 different PM departments: $12,500 from Corporate Government Affairs and $12,500 Worldwide Regulatory Office. National Taxpayers Union of Ohio again also got a contribution, of $5,000 --1998 Public Policy Contributions[6]

In 1999, PM gave $10,000 to NTU and $5,000 to the NTU of Ohio.(Philip Morris' 1999 Public Policy Contributions Budget).[7]

A May/June issue of Mother Jones carried an article titled "The Nicotine Network" that discussed the significant funding the NTU receives from Philip Morris.[8]

Additional information

Major funder of the Legislation Education Action Drive?


Dr. John E. Berthoud is former president of both the NTU and the NTUF.

Contact Information

108 North Alfred St. Alexandria VA 22314
Phone: 703.683.5700
Fax: 703.683.5722
Web site: http://www.ntu.org

Sourcewatch resources

External links


  1. Duane Parde bio, National Taxpayer's Union website, accessed August 20, 2011.
  2. National Public Radio, National Chairman Of ALEC Responds To Report, Fresh Air, July 21, 2011.
  3. Joseph A. D'Agostino, Conservative spotlight: David M.Stanley, Human Events Publishing, Inc., January 29, 1999, provided by ProQuest Information and Learning Company, accessed August 24, 2011
  4. Tax Education Support Foundation, 2007 Form 990, form filed with the IRS and available via Guidestar.org, November 21, 2008
  5. American Legislative Exchange Council, 1998 Form 990, form filed with the IRS and available via Guidestar.org, May 14, 1999


  • Jim Snyder, "Nuclear advocates try to clear obstacles," The Hill, November 8, 2007. "'Taxpayers should not be required to finance billions in risky loan guarantees [for new nuclear plants],' states a letter that TCS (Taxpayers for Common Sense), the National Taxpayers Union and Citizens Against Government Waste jointly sent to Congress."

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