Non-profit

Democracy Integrity Project (TDIP)

Location:

MCLEAN, VA

Tax ID:

81-5223488

Tax-Exempt Status:

501(c)(4)

Formation:

2017

Founder:

Daniel J. Jones

The Democracy Integrity Project (TDIP) is an advocacy group that purports to investigate interference in American and international elections by hostile foreign powers. Its work is based heavily on research and information generated by individuals and organizations behind the 2016 “Steele dossier” of unsubstantiated attacks on Donald Trump. [1][2]

It is one of three related organizations run by Daniel J. Jones, a former FBI analyst and staffer for Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) and the Senate Intelligence Committee, who was instrumental in publicizing information about the CIA’s detention and interrogation practices during the War on Terror. [3]

Connected Organizations

Jones is TDIP’s president and CEO. The organization’s 2017 tax filings report that Jones worked full-time for the nonprofit and was paid $381,263 in salary and other compensation for the year. [4]

TDIP is apparently separate from Jones’s research firm Penn Quarter Group, which Jones also runs. Senator Charles Grassley (R-IA) alleged that Jones told the FBI that Penn Quarter “was being funded by 7 to 10 wealthy donors located primarily in New York and California, who provided approximately $50 million.” [5]

Jones’s third organization, the 501(c)(3) charity Advance Democracy, was founded in 2018 and has not filed public tax returns as of June 2019. [6]  It shares an address with TDIP and is also actively engaged in purporting to combat Russian election interference: The New York Times reported that it had “flagged a number of suspicious websites and social media accounts” to authorities as promoting Russian interference in the 2019 European Parliament elections and claimed right-wing groups were using the same tactics. [7]

Fusion GPS

The Democracy Integrity Project funds and promotes the work of people and organizations linked to the discredited “Steele dossier” of unsubstantiated allegations about Donald Trump.

House Intelligence Committee Republicans released records of a discussion FBI agents had with Jones, in which he disclosed that his for-profit company Penn Quarter Group had secured the services of “Steele dossier” author Christopher Steele and Fusion GPS to “continue exposing Russian interference in the 2016 U.S. Presidential election.” The FBI report said Jones planned to send information generated by Steele and Fusion GPS to Congress and the media. [8] A spokesperson for liberal financier George Soros confirmed to the Washington Post that the liberal financier was aware that TDIP “used Fusion GPS as a contractor.” [9]

In its 2017 tax filings, Democracy Integrity Project reported paying more than $3.3 million – roughly two thirds of its expenses for the entire year — to Fusion GPS parent company Bean LLC. [10] It also paid more than $250,000 to a UK-based company where Christopher Steele is a director, and almost $128,000 to Edward Austin LTD, a firm run by Steele dossier research assistant Edward Baumgartner. [11][12][13][14] It also paid almost $150,000 to Istok Associates, a UK-based firm run by Neil Barnett, who has claimed that Russia interfered with the UK’s Brexit referendum. [15] [16]

Political Activities

2018 Midterm Elections

During the 2018 midterm elections, TDIP partnered with cyber-security firm New Knowledge to operate Disinfo 2018, a website that purported to track Russian efforts to interfere with the elections through social media campaigns. [17] A New York Times investigation uncovered that New Knowledge itself was using the similar social media disinformation tactics to depress Republican turnout in the 2018 Alabama Senate special election, in a project funded in part by LinkedIn co-founder and left-wing activist Reid Hoffman and operated with the assistance of staff from left-of-center donor Investing in US. [18]

Funding

In 2017, TDIP received slightly more than $7 million in donations. While it does not disclose its donors, a spokesperson for George Soros has confirmed that the left-wing financier has donated at least $1 million to the organization. [19][20] IRS filings also show that TDIP has also received more than $2 million from the Fund for a Better Future (FBF), a left-of-center foundation headquartered in Silicon Valley. [21] The donation to TDIP was the second-largest that FBF made in 2017, behind only a $3.9 million donation to left-wing advocacy group Priorities USA.

References

  1. Polantz, Katelyn. “Steele Says He Used Unverified Information to Support Details about Web Company in Dossier.” CNN. March 16, 2019. Accessed May 23, 2019. https://www.cnn.com/2019/03/16/politics/steele-information-dossier/index.html.
  2. Grassley, Charles E. “Letter from Sen. Charles Grassley to Sen. Christopher Coons.” United States Senate. May 29, 2018. Accessed May 23, 2019. https://www.judiciary.senate.gov/imo/media/doc/2018-05-29%20CEG%20to%20Coons%20(Trump%20Jr%20Interview).pdf.
  3. “Daniel J. Jones.” The Carr Center for Human Rights – Harvard Kennedy School. Accessed May 14, 2019. https://carrcenter.hks.harvard.edu/people/daniel-jones.
  4. Democracy Integrity Project, Return of Organization Exempt from Income Tax (Form 990), 2017, Part VII https://projects.propublica.org/nonprofits/organizations/815223488/201843199349303694/IRS990
  5. “REPORT OF THE HOUSE PERMANENT SELECT COMMITTEE ON INTELLIGENCE ON RUSSIAN ACTIVE MEASURES Together with MINORITY VIEWS.” (p.113) Congress.gov. December 31, 2018. Accessed May 23, 2019. https://www.congress.gov/115/crpt/hrpt1110/CRPT-115hrpt1110.pdf.
  6. “Advance Democracy, Inc.” Internal Revenue Service. Accessed May 28, 2019. https://apps.irs.gov/app/eos/displayAll.do?dispatchMethod=displayAllInfo&Id=10904680&ein=824277642.
  7. Apuzzo, Matt, and Adam Satariano. “Russia Is Targeting Europe’s Elections. So Are Far-Right Copycats.” The New York Times. May 12, 2019. Accessed May 23, 2019. https://www.nytimes.com/2019/05/12/world/europe/russian-propaganda-influence-campaign-european-elections-far-right.html.
  8. “REPORT OF THE HOUSE PERMANENT SELECT COMMITTEE ON INTELLIGENCE ON RUSSIAN ACTIVE MEASURES Together with MINORITY VIEWS.” (p.113) Congress.gov. December 31, 2018. Accessed May 23, 2019. https://www.congress.gov/115/crpt/hrpt1110/CRPT-115hrpt1110.pdf.
  9. Ignatius, David. “The GOP’s Spin on the Russia Probe Doesn’t Add up.” The Washington Post. September 25, 2018. Accessed May 23, 2019. https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/a-gop-spin-on-the-russia-probe-reads-like-a-noir-thriller–but-doesnt-add-up/2018/09/25/1b940c92-c0ca-11e8-be77-516336a26305_story.html?utm_term=.32429e427000.
  10. “Democracy Integrity Project, Form 990 – Nonprofit Explorer.” ProPublica. May 09, 2013. Accessed May 28, 2019. https://projects.propublica.org/nonprofits/organizations/815223488/201843199349303694/IRS990.
  11. “People for WALSINGHAM PARTNERS LIMITED (09558344).” WALSINGHAM PARTNERS LIMITED – Officers (free Information from Companies House). Accessed May 28, 2019. https://beta.companieshouse.gov.uk/company/09558344/officers.
  12. Gerstein, Josh, and Darren Samuelsohn. “Judge Won’t Dismiss Libel Suit against Fusion GPS over Dossier.” POLITICO. January 17, 2019. Accessed May 28, 2019. https://www.politico.com/story/2019/01/17/libel-suit-fusion-gps-dossier-1106984.
  13. Bertrand, Natasha. “Meet the Russia Specialist Who Worked on 2 of Fusion GPS’ Most Controversial Projects.” Business Insider. January 14, 2018. Accessed May 28, 2019. https://www.businessinsider.com/ed-baumgartner-fusion-gps-christopher-steele-russia-projects-2018-1.
  14. “People for EDWARD AUSTIN LIMITED (07188005).” EDWARD AUSTIN LIMITED – Officers (free Information from Companies House). Accessed May 28, 2019. https://beta.companieshouse.gov.uk/company/07188005/officers.
  15. Barnett, Neil. “Russia’s Brexit Subversion.” The American Interest. November 09, 2017. Accessed May 28, 2019. https://www.the-american-interest.com/2017/11/09/russias-brexit-subversion/.
  16. “People for ISTOK ASSOCIATES LIMITED (07194978).” ISTOK ASSOCIATES LIMITED – Officers (free Information from Companies House). Accessed May 28, 2019. https://beta.companieshouse.gov.uk/company/07194978/officers.
  17. “Midterms Disinformation Dashboard.” Disinfo 2018. November 06, 2018. Accessed May 28, 2019. https://web.archive.org/web/20190204011452/https://www.disinfo2018.com/. Archived at Archive.org.
  18. Shane, Scott, and Alan Blinder. “Secret Experiment in Alabama Senate Race Imitated Russian Tactics.” The New York Times. December 20, 2018. Accessed May 28, 2019. https://www.nytimes.com/2018/12/19/us/alabama-senate-roy-jones-russia.html.
  19. Vogel, Kenneth P., Scott Shane, and Patrick Kingsley. “How Vilification of George Soros Moved From the Fringes to the Mainstream.” The New York Times. October 31, 2018. Accessed May 28, 2019. https://www.nytimes.com/2018/10/31/us/politics/george-soros-bombs-trump.html.
  20. Solomon, John. “US Embassy Pressed Ukraine to Drop Probe of George Soros Group during 2016 Election.” TheHill. March 26, 2019. Accessed May 23, 2019. https://thehill.com/opinion/campaign/435906-us-embassy-pressed-ukraine-to-drop-probe-of-george-soros-group-during-2016.
  21. “2017 Form 990.” Fund for a Better Future. November 5, 2018. Accessed May 28, 2019. http://fundforabetterfuture.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/12/For-Public-Copy-Fund-for-a-Better-Future-F990-12.31.17-00469030xA1C15.pdf.

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Nonprofit Information

  • Accounting Period: December - November
  • Tax Exemption Received: August 1, 2017

  • Available Filings

    No filings available.

    Democracy Integrity Project (TDIP)

    1360 BEVERLY RD
    STE 300
    MCLEAN, VA 22101-3646