The 2020 Lincoln Project Stewardship Report describes our impact on the 2020 elections, explains our effective fundraising and spending strategies, and provides financial details related to our activities. This refutes much of the misreporting you have seen in the media on our effectiveness and ethics.
The Lincoln Project has played an outsized role in confronting Trump and Trumpism in America – taking an unconventional approach to voter engagement, content production, and even using an “audience of one” strategy. In an election post-mortem, Trump’s own pollster credited Trump’s defeat to the groups targeted by The Lincoln Project: college-educated voters, Independents, and soft Republicans.
As part of its ongoing governance and operational review, The Lincoln Project Board of Directors formed the Transition Advisory Committee to help strengthen the organization’s management and operations. One of the responsibilities the Committee has been tasked with is the production and distribution of this Financial Stewardship Report.
The Report, overseen by the Transition Advisory Committee, breaks down how The Lincoln Project marshaled resources to defeat former President Donald Trump, beat his enablers in elected office, and prevent the authoritarian and anti-democratic forces of Trumpism from prevailing. The Report categorizes and explains The Lincoln Project’s spending, illustrates the impact donor contributions had on this effort, explains how Super PACs work operationally describes ad production and voter contact costs, and provides tangible examples of how The Lincoln Project content was produced and distributed.
Additionally, the Report provides a holistic view of how The Lincoln Project’s unconventional approach to defeating Trump was executed over the course of the 2020 election cycle through the Senate runoffs in Georgia in January 2021. The Report was compiled in consultation with outside counsel and a compliance firm.
Although Donald Trump was defeated, the threat of Trumpism still lingers – necessitating the continuation of The Lincoln Project’s mission. Given the organization’s past success and present reach, the Transition Advisory Committee has recommended implementing new measures, including the creation of a new Financial Comptroller position that will provide focused assistance with oversight over financial processes at The Lincoln Project, the establishment of a new Donor Advisory Committee selected by the Board of Directors to offer advice and counsel for the organization, and the issuance of an Annual Report, in addition to the internal operational changes already underway at The Lincoln Project prior to the commissioning of the Committee.
Consistent with our charge, this Report of the activities and expenditures undertaken by The Lincoln Project during the aforementioned period is presented for review.