Non-profit

American Economic Liberties Project

Website:

www.economicliberties.us/

Location:

WASHINGTON, DC

Tax ID:

84-3989657

Tax-Exempt Status:

501(c)(3)

Budget (2021):

Revenue: $3,370,226
Expenses: $1,611,301
Assets: $2,531,356

Founded:

2020 1

References

  1. “American Economic Liberties Project.” Cause IQ. Accessed February 3, 2023. https://www.causeiq.com/organizations/american-economic-liberties-project,843989657/

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The American Economic Liberties Project is an advocacy group that opposes what it considers to be an excess concentration of corporate power in various sectors of the American economy. The organization says it opposes monopolies and calls for more federal and state regulation of private businesses in hopes to “redistribute economic power to the people.” 1

Background

The American Economic Liberties Project was founded in February 2020 to promote what it called the intellectual victories of the anti-monopoly movement. The organization says it opposes the “crisis of concentrated economic power.” 2

Advocacy

The American Economic Liberties Project demands accountability from state and federal officials that have power to protect workers, small businesses, communities, and democracy from monopolistic corporations. The project also says it works with organizations, including labor unions, “racial justice” groups, and small businesses to “redistribute economic power to the people.” 3

The project supports aggressive investigatory agendas at the federal and state level, strong antitrust law enforcement, anti-corruption measures, corporate accountability, and what it calls a “strong administrative state” to challenge monopolies’ dominance. 4

In November 2020, then-executive director of the American Economic Liberties Project Sarah Miller spoke at an Open Society Foundations event entitled “Trade, Inclusive Prosperity, and Competition in 2021 and Beyond.” The event was moderated by Tom Perriello, and also featured AFL-CIO international department director Cathy Feingold.5

In 2022, the project demanded stricter regulation of the airline industry after what it called the meltdown by the Federal Aviation Administration during the holiday season that year. 6

In 2023, the project has called for greater oversight and regulation of Ticketmaster, which it considers a monopoly. 7

The American Economic Liberties Project hosted its 2023 Anti-Monopoly Summit on May 4, 2023. Speakers included U.S. Senator Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) and U.S. Representative Summer Lee (D-PA), Secretary of Transportation Pete Buttigieg, director of the National Economic Council Lael Brainard, Federal Trade Commission chair Lina Khan, Consumer Financial Protection Bureau director Rohit Chopra, and National Labor Relations Board general counsel Jennifer Abruzzo. President Joe Biden provided a video message to the event.8

In May 2023, the American Economic Liberties Project announced “The Wall Street Grumble,” which it described as a tracker “that documents the Wall Street Journal’s ongoing obsession with Federal Trade Commission Chair Lina Khan.” At the time, it claimed that “the Journal has published a total of 63 editorials, opinion pieces, and letters to the editor since the beginning of Khan’s tenure, all of them intending to undermine the FTC’s enforcement actions.”9 As of July 27, 2023, the tracker had 75 entries.10

In June 2023, it published a factsheet entitled “The FTC is Holding Corporate Actors Accountable, Protecting Small Businesses, Workers, and Consumers.” The preface praised Federal Trade Commission Chair Lina Khan, saying that she was “steering the FTC to protect working families and honest businesses with stronger law enforcement.”11

Leadership

Sarah Miller was executive director of the American Economic Liberties Project until March 2023, when she left to become special advisor to the chair of the Federal Trade Commission in the Biden Administration.12 As of 2024 she serves as chief of staff for the FTC. 13 She previously was the deputy director for the Open Markets Institute, which also backed stricter antitrust enforcement. Miller has said, “Ironically, it was a Google search for ‘monopolies in America’” that led her to find out about the Open Markets Institute. 14 She also previously worked for the Center for American Progress, and the U.S. Treasury Department. She was on the Biden-Harris transition team, helped launch the Washington Center for Equitable Growth and was the deputy economic policy director for Hillary Clinton’s 2008 presidential campaign. 15

Faiz Shakir is interim executive director of the American Economic Liberties Project as of August 2023. He is the founder and executive director of More Perfect Union, and is also chief political advisor to U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders (I-VT). Shakir was the campaign manager of Sanders’ 2020 president campaign, and has also worked as a senior advisor to former U.S. Senator Harry Reid (D-NV) and U.S. Representative Nancy Pelosi (D-CA). He was formerly the national political director of the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), and was vice president for communications at the Center for American Progress, where he was editor-in-chief of ThinkProgress.org.16 Shakir is married to Sarah Miller, and their wedding was reportedly officiated by Democratic operative John Podesta.17

Nidhi Hegde is managing director of the American Economic Liberties Project. Hegde is an international development professional and formerly worked for the Open Markets Institute, the Monitor Group, FSG, and the Omidyar Network. 18

Pat Garofalo is the director of state and local policy for the American Economic Liberties Project. Garofalo previously worked for the Center for American Progress. He is the author of The Billionaire Boondoggle: How Our Politicians Let Corporations and Bigwigs Steal Our Money and Jobs. 19

Morgan Harper is the director of policy and advocacy at the American Economic Liberties Project. Harper is a lawyer and a former candidate for the Democratic nomination for U.S. Senate in Ohio. 20

Matt Stoller is the director of research for the American Economic Liberties Project. Stoller is the author of Goliath: The Hundred Year War Between Monopoly Power and Democracy. He is a former advisor to the Senate Budget Committee. 21

Laleh Ispahani is a member of American Economic Liberties Project’s board of directors.22 She is executive director of Open Society-U.S. at the Open Society Foundations. Before that, she was senior policy counsel at the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) and worked in campaign finance litigation at the Brennan Center for Justice.23

Financials

In 2022, the American Economic Liberties Project reported total revenue of $2,751,173, total expenses of $2,876,046, and net assets of $2,334,955.24

In 2021, the Foundation to Promote Open Society gave $500,000 to the American Economic Liberties Project for general support.25

In 2021, the Omidyar Network Fund gave $230,000 to the American Economic Liberties Project for general operating support.26

References

  1. “American Economic Liberties Project.” William and Flora Hewlett Foundation. November 1, 2021. Accessed February 3, 2023. https://hewlett.org/grants/american-economic-liberties-project-for-general-operating-support/
  2.  “American Economic Liberties Project.” Idealist. Accessed February 3, 2023. https://www.idealist.org/en/nonprofit/3302127568b74122b5d2e54482c8dfd0-american-economic-liberties-project-washington
  3. “American Economic Liberties Project.” William and Flora Hewlett Foundation. November 1, 2021. Accessed February 3, 2023. https://hewlett.org/grants/american-economic-liberties-project-for-general-operating-support/
  4. “American Economic Liberties Project.” Idealist. Accessed February 3, 2023. https://www.idealist.org/en/nonprofit/3302127568b74122b5d2e54482c8dfd0-american-economic-liberties-project-washington
  5. “Trade, Inclusive Prosperity, and Competition in 2021 and Beyond.” Open Society Foundations. November 19, 2020. Available at: https://www.opensocietyfoundations.org/events/trade-inclusive-prosperity-and-competition-in-2021-and-beyond
  6.  McGee, William. “It’s Time to Finally Fix Air Travel.” The New York Times. January 13, 2023. Accessed February 3, 2023. https://www.nytimes.com/2023/01/13/opinion/faa-air-travel-regulation-outage.html
  7. Olen, Helaine. “Ticketmaster’s Taylor Swift debacle was so bad it united the parties.” The Washington Post. January 26, 2023. Accessed February 3, 2023. https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/2023/01/26/ticketmaster-taylor-swift-senate-worst-monopoly/
  8. “2023 Anti-Monopoly Summit.” American Economic Liberties Project. Accessed August 28, 2023. Available at: https://www.economicliberties.us/event/2023-anti-monopoly-summit/
  9. “Economic Liberties Launches New Tracker Exposing WSJ’s Unhealthy Obsession with Chair Lina Khan.” American Economic Liberties Project. May 23, 2023. Available at: https://www.economicliberties.us/press-release/economic-liberties-launches-new-tracker-exposing-wsjs-unhealthy-obsession-with-chair-lina-khan/
  10. “The Wall Street Grumble.” American Economic Liberties Project. July 27, 2023. Available at: https://www.economicliberties.us/the-wall-street-grumble/
  11. “Factsheet: The FTC is Holding Corporate Actions Accountable, Protecting Small Businesses, Workers, and Consumers.” American Economic Liberties Project. June 2023. Available at: https://www.economicliberties.us/our-work/factsheet-the-ftc-is-holding-corporate-actors-accountable-protecting-small-businesses-workers-and-consumers-2/
  12. “Economic Liberties Executive Director to Depart for Role at FTC.” American Economic Liberties Project. March 6, 2023. Available at: https://www.economicliberties.us/press-release/economic-liberties-executive-director-to-depart-for-role-at-ftc/
  13. Rosiak, Luke. “A Leftist Billionaire Vowed To ‘Reimagine Capitalism.’ Then He Colonized A Federal Agency.” The Daily Wire, June 10, 2024. https://www.dailywire.com/news/a-leftist-billionaire-vowed-to-reimagine-capitalism-then-he-colonized-a-federal-agency
  14. Press Release. “Open Markets Congratulates American Economic Liberties Project on Its Launch.” February 11, 2020. Accessed February 3, 2023. https://www.openmarketsinstitute.org/publications/open-markets-congratulates-american-economic-liberties-project-launch
  15. “About Us.” American Economic Liberties Project. Accessed February 3, 2023. https://www.economicliberties.us/about/
  16. “Faiz Shakir.” American Economic Liberties Project. Accessed August 28, 2023. Available at: https://www.economicliberties.us/faiz-shakir/
  17. Daniel Fisher. “As Court Losses Mount, Khan Remakes FTC with Like-Minded Hires.” Legal Newsline. July 12, 2023. Available at: https://legalnewsline.com/stories/645655208-as-court-losses-mount-khan-remakes-ftc-with-like-minded-hires
  18. “About Us.” American Economic Liberties Project. Accessed February 3, 2023. https://www.economicliberties.us/about/
  19. “About Us.” American Economic Liberties Project. Accessed February 3, 2023. https://www.economicliberties.us/about/
  20. “About Us.” American Economic Liberties Project. Accessed February 3, 2023. https://www.economicliberties.us/about/
  21. “About Us.” American Economic Liberties Project. Accessed February 3, 2023. https://www.economicliberties.us/about/
  22. “Laleh Ispahani.” American Economic Liberties Project. Accessed August 28, 2023. Available at: https://www.economicliberties.us/laleh-ispahani/
  23. “Laleh Ispahani.” Open Society Foundations. Accessed August 28, 2023. Available at: https://www.opensocietyfoundations.org/who-we-are/leadership/laleh-ispahani
  24. Return of Organization Exempt From Income Tax (Form 990). American Economic Liberties Project. 2022. Part I.
  25. “Awarded Grants.” Open Society Foundations. Accessed August 28, 2023. Available at: https://www.opensocietyfoundations.org/grants/past?filter_keyword=american+economic+liberties+project&grant_id=OR2021-81683
  26. Return of Private Foundation (Form 990-PF). Omidyar Network Fund Inc. 2021. Part XIV.
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Nonprofit Information

  • Accounting Period: December - November
  • Tax Exemption Received: July 1, 2020

  • Available Filings

    Period Form Type Total revenue Total functional expenses Total assets (EOY) Total liabilities (EOY) Unrelated business income? Total contributions Program service revenue Investment income Comp. of current officers, directors, etc. Form 990
    2021 Dec Form 990 $3,370,226 $1,611,301 $2,531,356 $71,528 N $3,370,226 $0 $0 $155,447
    2020 Dec Form 990 $2,160,517 $1,408,761 $762,071 $10,315 N $2,160,517 $0 $0 $140,035

    American Economic Liberties Project

    1150 CONNECTICUT AVE NW
    WASHINGTON, DC 20036-4104