Non-profit

Progressive Congress

Website:

www.progressivecongress.org/

Location:

WASHINGTON, DC

Tax ID:

20-3714244

Tax-Exempt Status:

501(c)(3)

Budget (2017):

Revenue: $482,779
Expenses: $580,926
Assets: $17,330

Formation:

2006

Status:

Now the Congressional Progressive Caucus Center (CPCC)

The Progressive Congress Foundation (Progressive Congress) was a left-wing organization that sought to push the Democratic Party further to the political left. [1] In 2018, Progressive Congress became the Congressional Progressive Caucus Center (CPCC). CPCC is a think tank affiliated with the Congressional Progressive Caucus, a left-wing congressional caucus that works to shift the Democratic Party’s platform further to the left. [2]

Before it morphed into CPCC, the Progressive Congress board featured several high-profile, left-of-center activists and officials. These included former chair of the Congressional Progressive Caucus Keith Ellison (D-MN), founder and director of the Campaign for America’s Future Robert Borosage, and former president of the Economic Policy Institute Lawrence Mishel. [3]

History

Progressive Congress has removed its website and all information about the organization from the internet, though archives of the Progressive Congress website remain available. [4]

It is unclear who founded Progressive Congress. The organization first appeared online in April 2009 as the American Progressive Caucus Policy Foundation (APCPF). The APCPF described itself as a “communications, fact finding, research and education center for progressive leaders.” [5] In 2010, the organization rebranded as ProgressiveCongress.org, shifting its focus to health care. Progressive Congress joined with organizations including the and the AFL-CIO to support left-progressive health care policy implementation. [6] [7]

Archives of the Progressive Congress website reveal that it remained in operation until 2017, when the Progressive Congress rebranded and became the Congressional Progressive Caucus Center (CPCC). [8] Prior to 2018, Progressive Congress operated as a think tank and communications firm on behalf of left-progressive policies and politicians, expanding its focus beyond healthcare to advocate for left-of-center policy implementation on issues including economic regulation, abortion, national security, labor organizing, and immigration. Progressive Congress funneled donations to the organization through the Action Network, a left-of-center online fundraising platform. [9]

Activity

Before becoming Congressional Progressive Caucus Center, Progressive Congress portrayed itself as the “driving force for progressive change.” The organization hosted fellowships and summits on behalf of left-progressive officials and organizers, designed communication strategies for left-wing policy positions, and developed policy recommendations. [10]

Much of Progressive Congress’s work focused on communicating left-progressive ideals. Progressive Congress hosted an annual summit that brought together left-progressive lawmakers and grassroots organizers, claiming that the summit “set the agenda for the progressive movement” each year. Progressive Congress also placed fellows with left-wing officials on Capitol Hill. Most notably, Progressive Congress launched the Congressional Messenger Program, an initiative that trained activists and media professionals to cast left-wing policies in an appealing light and create a “media-ready team of compelling spokespersons in Congress,” specifically to advance far-left immigration policy. [11]

In 2016, Progressive Congress launched the Women’s Initiative, a project that sought to implement left-wing abortion policy. The Initiative claimed that expanding access to abortion would make women more well-off and claimed that a lack of access to abortions caused “poverty” among women. [12] The Initiative also supported proposals to use federal funding for abortions. [13]

People

In 2011, Darcy Burner spoke to Politico, representing herself as president of Progressive Congress. Burner is a failed political candidate who ran for the U.S. House of Representatives as a Democrat in 2012 and as a Democrat for the Washington House of Representatives in 2016. [14] Burner has also sat on the boards of a number of left-of-center organizations, including NARAL Pro-Choice America and the Congressional Progressive Caucus PAC. [15]

As of 2018, Gabriela Lemus worked as president of Progressive Congress. Before working at Progressive Congress, Lemus led the Labor Council for Latin American Advancement, a constituency group of the AFL-CIO. Lemus also worked in the Washington Office on Latin America (WOLA), a left-of-center advocacy organization.

While all information related to Progressive Congress has been taken offline, archived versions of its website list several high-profile, left-of-center advocacy figures as Progressive Congress board members. These included Robert Borosage, founder and director of the Campaign for America’s Future; former chair of the Congressional Progressive Caucus Keith Ellison (D-MN); John Cavanagh, executive director of the left-wing Institute for Policy Studies; and Larry Mishel, former president of the Economic Policy Institute. [16]

Several other Progressive Congress board members have extensive experience in left-of-center organizing. Amalgamated Bank president Keith Mestrich, former publisher of The Nation Katrina vanden Huevel, UltraViolet co-founder Shaunna Thomas, and Bend the Arc Jewish Action director Hadar Susskind all sat on the Progressive Congress board of directors. [17]

While CPCC does not disclose its board members on its website, the organization’s tax filings indicate that each of the listed Progressive Congress board members remained board members at CPCC following the rebranding, at least as of 2018. [18]

References

  1. Smith, Ben. “The End of the DLC Era.” POLITICO, February 8, 2011. https://www.politico.com/story/2011/02/the-end-of-the-dlc-era-049041. ^
  2. Killough, Ashley. “Congressional Progressives Get Their Own Center.” CNN. Cable News Network, October 9, 2018. https://www.cnn.com/2018/10/09/politics/congress-progressives-center/index.html. ^
  3. “About Us.” Progressive Congress. Progressive Congress. Accessed May 12, 2021. https://web.archive.org/web/20180326040834if_/http://www.progressivecongress.org/about-pc#our-board. ^
  4. “Welcome.” Progressive Congress. Accessed May 12, 2021. https://web.archive.org/web/20150708225115if_/http://www.progressivecongress.org/#about-us. ^
  5. “Home.” Progressive Congress. Accessed May 12, 2021. https://web.archive.org/web/20090430123934/http://www.progressivecongress.org/. ^
  6. “Building a Coalition around Healthcare Reform.” Progressive Congress. Accessed May 12, 2021. https://web.archive.org/web/20100204054526/http://www.progressivecongress.org/. ^
  7. “Building a Coalition.” Progressive Congress. Accessed May 12, 2021. https://web.archive.org/web/20100125195732/http://www.progressivecongress.org/about/coalition.htm. ^
  8. “We Have Launched the Congressional Progressive Caucus Center!” Congressional Progressive Caucus Center. Progressive Congress. Accessed May 12, 2021. https://web.archive.org/web/20190611164206/http://progressivecongress.org/. ^
  9. “Welcome.” Progressive Congress. Accessed May 12, 2021. https://web.archive.org/web/20180413052250if_/http://www.progressivecongress.org/#about-us. ^
  10. “Communications Strategy.” Progressive Congress. Accessed May 12, 2021. https://web.archive.org/web/20180413052250if_/http://www.progressivecongress.org/#communicationstrategy. ^
  11. “Communications Strategy.” Progressive Congress. Accessed May 12, 2021. https://web.archive.org/web/20180413052250if_/http://www.progressivecongress.org/#communicationstrategy. ^
  12. “Policy Issues.” Progressive Congress. Accessed May 12, 2021. https://web.archive.org/web/20180418172648if_/http://www.progressivecongress.org/policy#womens-initiative ^
  13. Carpenter, Zoë. “What Abortion Has to Do with the Minimum Wage.” The Nation, May 5, 2016. https://www.thenation.com/article/archive/what-abortion-has-to-do-with-the-minimum-wage/ ^
  14. “Darcy Burner.” Ballotpedia. Lucy Burns Institute. Accessed May 12, 2021. https://ballotpedia.org/Darcy_Burner. ^
  15. “Darcy Burner.” The Nation, April 2, 2010. https://www.thenation.com/authors/darcy-burner/. ^
  16. “Our Board.” Progressive Congress. Accessed May 12, 2021. https://web.archive.org/web/20180326040834if_/http://www.progressivecongress.org/about-pc#our-board. ^
  17. “Our Board.” Progressive Congress. Accessed May 12, 2021. https://web.archive.org/web/20180326040834if_/http://www.progressivecongress.org/about-pc#our-board. ^
  18. “Congressional Progressive Caucus Center.” Return of Organization Exempt from Income Tax, Form 990, 2018. Part VII. ^
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Nonprofit Information

  • Accounting Period: December - November
  • Tax Exemption Received: March 1, 2006

  • 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
    2017 Dec Form 990 $482,779 $580,926 $17,330 $58,513 N $482,779 $0 $0 $141,852 PDF
    2016 Dec Form 990 $484,391 $576,274 $97,634 $40,670 N $474,938 $9,453 $0 $147,354
    2015 Dec Form 990 $636,017 $548,769 $174,277 $25,431 N $613,042 $22,975 $0 $155,481 PDF
    2014 Dec Form 990 $571,300 $539,798 $76,911 $15,313 N $571,300 $0 $0 $154,458 PDF
    2013 Dec Form 990 $749,365 $715,232 $37,075 $6,979 N $749,365 $0 $0 $129,072 PDF
    2012 Dec Form 990 $707,630 $826,635 $56,550 $60,587 N $707,630 $0 $0 $151,296 PDF
    2011 Dec Form 990 $680,042 $639,613 $116,896 $1,928 N $680,042 $0 $0 $98,000 PDF
    2010 Dec Form 990 $390,535 $341,404 $97,394 $22,854 N $390,535 $0 $0 $125,546 PDF

    Additional Filings (PDFs)

    Progressive Congress

    600 PENNSYLVANIA AVE SE STE 340
    WASHINGTON, DC 20003-6300