The radical left is at it again. In the latest liberal effort to silence conservatives, the office of New York Attorney General Letitia James leaked a confidential list of my policy group’s supporters to the mainstream media.
Now we’re asking the Department of Justice to investigate the New York AG’s office. If DOJ refuses, that says the Biden administration is completely fine with illegally targeting conservatives.
This is more than just a gross violation of state and federal law — it’s a glaring sign of the left’s win-at-all costs mentality. Liberals are willing to do anything to beat conservatives, and they don’t care what laws they break or whom they hurt along the way.
James’ office is targeting Stand for America, which I founded to shine a light on failed liberal policies and promote strong conservative solutions. We’ve criticized New York state for the simple reason that it’s a basket case of crime, wokeness and half-baked radical ideas. Now the media have New York’s copy of our tax return, bearing the AG office’s official stamp. The return has our supporters’ names and personal information.
Federal and state law require that New York keep this information confidential. But it’s out in the open for all to see. Isn’t that convenient? The message is unmistakable: Criticize New York’s disastrous policies, and we’ll keep coming after you. In other words, shut up.
It’s funny how this kind of thing only happens to conservatives. In fact, Letitia James has a history of pulling stunts like this. Before she was even elected, she made clear she’d do virtually anything to punish conservatives. Campaigning, she promised to charge opponents with crimes and even try to remove them from office. Experts publicly warned that she has “an individualized political vendetta.” She’s proved it ever since.
Look at how she’s targeted pro-life groups. James used hidden cameras and undercover agents to monitor activists counseling women against abortion, with the goal of shutting them down. But federal courts decisively ruled against her. It says something that James was willing to shred conservatives’ constitutional right to gather.
She tried the same trick with the National Rifle Association. In what was clearly a political attempt to shut down the gun-rights organization for good, she went after the NRA’s finances. But even prominent liberals — including at Harvard and The Washington Post — made clear that this move was profoundly dangerous. Why? Because it sets a precedent of trying to destroy political opponents using government power.
My organization is the latest target.
We submitted a Freedom of Information Law request to James’ office. The department claimed it could not find a single record from any group or individual requesting our tax return. If that’s true, then somebody leaked it. Hence our request for DOJ to investigate.
Of course, New York is far from the only place where this kind of third-world junk happens. Gavin Newsom’s California is famous for targeting conservatives using every available tool of government. And then there’s Washington, DC, which is more focused on punishing the right than solving the problems the left’s created.
Remember when the Obama IRS targeted conservative groups? The agency just got an $80 billion raise from Democrats, and you can bet those IRS bureaucrats are going to use this windfall to renew their attacks on the right. Beyond the Biden administration, liberals in the Senate like Elizabeth Warren have made it their life’s mission to use their power to threaten conservatives. From coast to coast, liberals are only stepping up their campaign to use government power to silence their enemies.
Conservatives have been too nice for too long. I will hold the New York attorney general’s office accountable. And liberals should be very worried when conservatives next win elections, at both the state and federal levels. We won’t stoop to the left’s pitiful level of abusing government power to target opponents. But we will beef up the punishments for those who do and prosecute offenders to the maximum degree.
Liberals think they can intimidate and silence conservatives. They don’t know who they’re messing with.
Nikki Haley served as governor of South Carolina (2011-17) and US ambassador to the United Nations (2017-19).