Non-profit

Liberty Initiative Fund

Website:

libertyifund.org/

Location:

Woodbridge, VA

Tax ID:

45-4101488

Tax-Exempt Status:

501(c)(4)

The Liberty Initiative Fund is a libertarian-leaning organization that promotes ballot initiatives it characterizes as advancing economic liberty and government accountability. 1 Key issues for ballot measures include stronger voter ID laws, term limits for elected officials, and reforming public employee pensions. 2

The Liberty Initiative Fund has been involved in ballot measures in Colorado, Washington state, Arkansas, North Dakota, Montana, Arizona and Nevada. 3

Background

The Liberty Initiative Fund is a libertarian-leaning organization that says it promotes governmental accountability and protects personal and economic freedom. The organization advocates for ballot initiatives it characterizes as supporting liberty. 4 Key to this is pushing municipal-level term limits for elected officials and for reforming public employee pensions. 5

The Liberty Initiative Fund says it wants Americans to restore greater citizen control of government through ballot initiatives or through recalling public officials. The organization wants the people to hold government accountable, fight crony capitalism, and protect liberty. 6

News reports in 2021 and 2022 show that the organization has been active on ballot initiatives in Arkansas and Michigan. 7 8 Conservative megadonor Dick Uihlein has been the largest donor to the Restoration Action Inc., which has helped fund Liberty Initiative Fund, the Daily Beast reported in November 2022. 9

Activity

The Liberty Initiative Fund has been involved in measures across Colorado, Washington state, Arkansas, North Dakota, Montana, Arizona, and Nevada. 10

In 2021, the Liberty Initiative Fund joined Arkansas Term Limits and U.S. Term Limits to push for a ballot initiative for term limits for members of the Arkansas state legislature. The Arkansas legislature passed a law placing more restrictions on getting an initiative on the ballot. So, the three organizations filed a federal lawsuit against the state of Arkansas arguing the new restrictions for a ballot measure were unconstitutional. 11

The Liberty Initiative contributed $675,000 to a group advocating for a stronger voter ID initiatives in Michigan, the Daily Beast reported in November 2022. 12

Policy Advocacy

The Liberty Initiative Fund says it supports only allowing citizens to vote, supports voter ID laws, backs criminal justice reform and supports property rights. 13

The Liberty Initiative Fund says it primarily focuses on municipal ballot initiatives but also promotes state ballot measures. 14

Other issues of focus include term limits for elected leaders, reforming underfunded public employee pensions, ethics reforms, mandating independent prosecutors in fatal incidents involving police, establishing independent citizen review boards to hold police accountable, fighting crony capitalism, creating a voter check on public subsidies and tax-dollar giveaways of $1 million or more, stopping eminent domain abuse, reducing occupational licensing requirements, full disclosure of city contracts and competitive bidding processes, reforming civil asset forfeiture laws, and requiring police to wear lapel cameras. 15

Founder

Paul Jacob is the founder and president of the Liberty Initiative Fund. He started the group in 2012. 16 Jacob was previously the president of the Citizens in Charge Foundation, which also backed ballot initiatives. 17

An opponent of military conscription, Jacob was featured in a 1982 Rolling Stone article for his refusal to sign up for Selective Service. He was arrested in 1984 for not registering and spent six months in jail. 18

Jacob held positions in the national Libertarian Party including national director and its national ballot access coordinator. 19 Before that, he was chairman of the Arkansas Libertarian Party. 20

He was the president of U.S. Term Limits from 1992 to 2007. The organization helped 14 states get term limits on the ballot for state legislators and in some cases for members of Congress from that state. However, in 1995, the U.S. Supreme Court struck down term limit laws that applied to members of Congress, determining that state legislatures could not add qualifications for federal officeholders. 21

Jacob won the “Courage Under Fire” award at the 2009 Conservative Political Action Conference. He was named a “a rising star in politics” by Campaigns & Elections. He gained the Society for Individual Liberty’s “Phoenix Award” for “contributions to the advancement of liberty in America.” National Journal named him to the magazine’s “The Best and the Rightest” list. 22

References

  1. “Liberty Initiative Fund.” Cause IQ. Accessed December 16, 2022. https://www.causeiq.com/organizations/liberty-initiative-fund,454101488/
  2.  “Liberty Initiative Fund.” Ballotpedia. Accessed December 16, 2022. https://ballotpedia.org/Liberty_Initiative_Fund
  3. [1] “Liberty Initiative Fund.” Ballotpedia. Accessed December 16, 2022. https://ballotpedia.org/Liberty_Initiative_Fund
  4. “Liberty Initiative Fund.” Cause IQ. Accessed December 16, 2022. https://www.causeiq.com/organizations/liberty-initiative-fund,454101488/
  5. “Liberty Initiative Fund.” Ballotpedia. Accessed December 16, 2022. https://ballotpedia.org/Liberty_Initiative_Fund
  6. “About.” Liberty Initiative Fund. Accessed December 16, 2022. https://libertyifund.org/about/
  7. Associated Press. “Term limits groups challenge new limits on initiatives in Arkansas.” Arkansas Democrat-Gazette. May 27, 2021. Accessed December 16, 2022.  https://www.arkansasonline.com/news/2021/may/27/term-limits-groups-challenge-new-limits-initiative/
  8. Sollenberger, Roger. “Inside the Billionaire-Backed ‘Hub for Election Denial’ Daily Beast. November 28, 2022. Accessed December 16, 2022. https://www.thedailybeast.com/inside-the-billionaire-backed-dick-uihlein-hub-for-election-denial-restoration-action
  9. Sollenberger, Roger. “Inside the Billionaire-Backed ‘Hub for Election Denial’ Daily Beast. November 28, 2022. Accessed December 16, 2022. https://www.thedailybeast.com/inside-the-billionaire-backed-dick-uihlein-hub-for-election-denial-restoration-action
  10. “Liberty Initiative Fund.” Ballotpedia. Accessed December 16, 2022. https://ballotpedia.org/Liberty_Initiative_Fund
  11. Associated Press. “Term limits groups challenge new limits on initiatives in Arkansas.” Arkansas Democrat-Gazette. May 27, 2021. Accessed December 16, 2022. https://www.arkansasonline.com/news/2021/may/27/term-limits-groups-challenge-new-limits-initiative/
  12. Sollenberger, Roger. “Inside the Billionaire-Backed ‘Hub for Election Denial’ Daily Beast. November 28, 2022. Accessed December 16, 2022. https://www.thedailybeast.com/inside-the-billionaire-backed-dick-uihlein-hub-for-election-denial-restoration-action
  13.  “About.” Liberty Initiative Fund. Accessed December 16, 2022. https://libertyifund.org/about/
  14. “Our Issues.” Liberty Initiative Fund. Accessed December 16, 2022. https://libertyifund.org/issues-we-like/
  15. “Our Issues.” Liberty Initiative Fund. Accessed December 16, 2022. https://libertyifund.org/issues-we-like/
  16. “Liberty Initiative Fund.” Ballotpedia. Accessed December 16, 2022. https://ballotpedia.org/Liberty_Initiative_Fund
  17. “Paul Jacob.” Ballotpedia. Accessed December 16, 2022. https://ballotpedia.org/Paul_Jacob
  18.  “Paul Jacob.” Ballotpedia. Accessed December 16, 2022. https://ballotpedia.org/Paul_Jacob
  19. “Paul Jacob.” Ballotpedia. Accessed December 16, 2022. https://ballotpedia.org/Paul_Jacob
  20. “About Paul Jacob.” Common Sense with Paul Jacob. Accessed December 16, 2022. https://thisiscommonsense.org/about-paul-jacob-2/
  21. “Paul Jacob.” Ballotpedia. Accessed December 16, 2022. https://ballotpedia.org/Paul_Jacob
  22. “About Paul Jacob.” Common Sense with Paul Jacob. Accessed December 16, 2022. https://thisiscommonsense.org/about-paul-jacob-2/
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Liberty Initiative Fund

13168 Centerpointe Way, Suite 202
Woodbridge, VA 22193