The Guardian reported this week that Trump lawyer Jay Sekulow has directed tens of millions of dollars of charity money to himself and his family.
If that sounds illegal to you, some state authorities apparently agree. The states of New York and North Carolina have opened an investigation of Sekulow's charity.
North Carolina Attorney General Josh Stein and New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman will be looking into Jay Sekulow’s Christian Advocates Serving Evangelism (CASE) for any evidence of wrongdoing. As the Guardian reported, Sekulow signed off on documents pressuring poor and unemployed donors to make a “sacrificial gift” to CASE despite their financial hardship. He, his family and their businesses have raked in over $60 million in compensation and contracts through the charity since 2000, according to the report.
I can't say I feel any measure of sympathy for the poor Christian families that were allegedly scammed by Sekulow.
You can't really say they donated to a worthy cause because, according to The Guardian, Sekulow's charity asked people to donate to stop abortion, stop Planned Parenthood, stop Obamacare, stop immigration, and stop "Muslim terrorists" and "Islamic extremists."
“Islamic extremists are headed in your direction, and you are most likely the main target,” Sekulow himself told people in a recorded message used in fundraising calls during 2011. Telemarketers were instructed to tell people who initially said they could not donate that Islamist extremists “will succeed if we don’t do something RIGHT AWAY.” [...]
Case’s marketing callers have focused on grim stories about abortion year after year. People who initially resisted a request to donate money in 2012 were told: “Unbelievably, through Obamacare, Planned Parenthood could run a healthcare clinic in your child’s or grandchild’s middle school or high school and receive federal tax dollars to do it”.
Now, even if you were a right wing nutcase who wants to stop these imaginary threats, how exactly is donating to Sekulow's charity going to stop any of them? How is that suppose to work?
I will say this: using someone's religious beliefs to exploit them in this manner is damnable even if they're idiots. Them being idiots kind of makes it worse, because Sekulow isn't an idiot. He's actually one of those rich, educated coastal elites we're always hearing about and he used religion to con morons in the middle America out of millions of dollars. He knew exactly what he was doing. He thinks they're just as dumb as we do.