The Georgia secretary of state’s office is investigating failed gubernatorial candidate Stacey Abrams’ New Georgia Project for “financial irregularities.”
The probe into Abrams’ voting-rights charity comes after reports by The Washington Free Beacon outlined financial mismanagement by several of the charity’s former top executives, according to the Free Beacon. Subpoenas in the state investigation are expected to be sent soon.
In December, the New Georgia Project was found to be soliciting donations in at least nine states without a license. Some state laws require charities to file financial disclosures with the IRS before raising money within a state’s borders.
Last month, the New Georgia Project was found to be missing roughly $600,000 in unaccounted for spending. The group’s 2021 financial records showed payments of $533,846 for consulting and $67,500 in grant money to the Black Male Initiative. The Black Male Initiative never reported receiving the payments, however.
The 2021 filings were handed to the IRS two months after they were due and three months after the ouster of former New Georgia Project CEO Nse Ufot. Ufot is a Nigeria-born community organizer who was living in Canada in 2014 when Abrams recruited her to run the New Georgia Project. Ufot left the group in October.
New Georgia Project’s 2020 financial filings showed $0 paid in payroll taxes despite employing 173 workers, an anomaly and red flag, according to nonprofit experts interviewed by the Free Beacon. The financial forms included other oddities, as well.
Abrams is a prominent voting rights activist and twice-failed candidate for governor of Georgia. In 2022, Abrams lost her latest bid to become Georgia’s top executive by over 7 points to Republican Governor Brian Kemp.
Since her election defeat, Abrams has returned to activism. This week, she appeared in Nigeria to monitor its elections, traveling with a group from the International Republican Institute and the National Democratic Institute.
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“I would say that despite a slow start with the [violence]” said Abrams, updating a reporter on the state of the election. “we have seen orderly lines, we have seen long lines, signaling strong enthusiasm. But we’ve also seen a great deal of cooperation and a very peaceful conversation among voters. They want to be heard, and they are willing to stand in line and have patience, because they know that’s their path to progress.”