Web of leftist election influence: FTX connected to Data for Progress, Biden’s pick of Sec. Haaland for Interior, and to a flip-Alaska-blue project


The massive scandal around crypto-scammer Sam Bankman-Fried and his bankrupt FTX cryptocurrency exchange has stung a Democrat political advocacy group that takes credit for several cabinet choices of President Joe Biden in 2021.

The network of young progressives played an oversized role in Biden picking far-left radical Deb Haaland for Secretary of the Interior. To discover this, one must start pulling at the threads of the weave of organizations to which Bankman-Fried and his allies were funding, and what they did with that financial support.

Data for Progress is one of the organizations. It’s a leftist public opinion research group and funded project of the dark-money Tides Advocacy nonprofit group, a spinoff of Tides Foundation. The group is one of the many subgroups that launder liberal funds into campaign-like activities, for which the Tides Foundation is the nexus. Data for Progress is, in practical terms, a brother of the Democratic Party.

Data for Progress was founded by Sean McElwee, a political activist and socialistic superstar with close personal and political ties to Bankman-Fried.

How close? McElwee advised Bankman-Fried on which candidates and causes to fund, during Bankman-Fried’s meteoric rise from an unknown rookie investor in cryptocurrencies to the second-highest donor to the Democratic Party and its candidates, after George Soros.

Earlier this year, McElwee himself gave thousands of dollars to Guarding Against Pandemics, the fake nonprofit set up by Sam Bankman-Fried’s brother Gabe inside the Beltway. Guarding Against Pandemic’s activities are allegedly to work on preventing pandemics, but it appears to be a shadow organization for liberal influence-peddling operation run by Sam Bankman-Fried.

The ties are even deeper: McElwee was part of the network of people running the Bankman-Fried-financed “Protect Our Future” PAC a Political Action Committee that funded Democrat Congresswoman Mary Peltola’s campaign and the campaigns of other radical Democrats.

McElwee’s ties to Bankman-Fried are so close and so damaging to the polling organization that the board of Data for Progress has decided it has lost its confidence in him, and he is leaving the organization by the end of the year. The news of his departure and the link to Bankman-Fried was scooped by Puck journalist Theodore Schleifer.

The flipping of Alaska’s congressional seat to Democrat control is a big victory for this FTX-Data for Progress network of progressives. But some of their work has been even more profoundly impactful in working to turn the state of Alaska back into a dependent colony of the federal government. Involving himself in cabinet picks for President Joe Biden is just one area where McElwee succeeded.

McElwee and Data for Progress took credit for Biden choosing Deb Haaland for Secretary of the Interior. The company gave four separate memos to the incoming administration showing polling data to support the decision for Haaland. It did the same when it pushed Janet Yellen for Secretary of the Treasury, Xavier Becerra for Secretary of Health and Human Services, Marcia Fudge for Secretary of Housing and Urban Development, and Katherine Taifor United States Trade Representative.

All of these officials were chosen by Biden, and the memos themselves were cited in several mainstream media news reports at the time, according to InfluenceWatch.org.

In 2018, McElwee wrote, “Progressives such as Alexandra Ocasio-Cortez, Deb Haaland and Rashida Tlaib show how insurgent candidates can push the whole party left,” at InTheseTimes.com, where he likened Haaland with other members of the radical left “Squad,” and encouraged far left candidates to challenge Democrat centrists in order to move the party toward socialism.

The New York Times even acknowledged Data for Progress’ undeniable influence in the Biden Administration:

“President Biden mentions it in private calls. The White House reads its work. And Senator Chuck Schumer, the majority leader, teams up with its leaders for news conferences, blog posts and legislation,” wrote Times reporter Lisa Lerer in 2021. “The embrace of Data for Progress by the highest ranks of the Democratic Party is a coming-of-age moment for a left-leaning polling firm and think tank that is barely three years old.”

The organization was credited with getting legislation passed by the Senate.

“This week, legislation that was championed by the group and that would pour nearly a quarter-trillion dollars into scientific research and development passed the Senate. Earlier this year, Julian Brave NoiseCat, vice president of policy and strategy [for Data for Progress], led a successful campaign to nominate and confirm Deb Haaland as the first Native American cabinet secretary,” the Times reported.

Data for Progress accepts the credit for that pick and details exactly how the group got Haaland appointed, in this story on its own website.

Data for Progress takes credit for Deb Haaland as Interior Secretary.

“We pushed Biden to embrace an ambitious climate plan. Throughout the 2020 election, we identified key areas for improvement in Biden’s climate proposal, including through our Green New Deal candidate scorecards, our polling of Biden’s climate plan, and our battleground state surveys. We also showed Biden that climate was the issue voters trusted him most on compared to Trump, and that targeting climate investment to frontline communities makes voters more supportive of the Build Back Better agenda. Ultimately, Biden has made his climate plans more ambitious over time, and his Build Back Better Plan will invest hundreds of billions of dollars in clean energy,” Data for Progress says on its website’s Climate tab.

And on its Earned Media tab, the organization reveals how it uses media to legitimize itself, with great success in framing the mainstream media narrative, as well as the White House narrative. Read that tab here.

According to InfluenceWatch, Data for Progress primarily produces data-based reports and scorecards designed to shift the future of the Democratic Party into support for Medicare-for-All, the Green New Deal, and the dismantling of U.S. Immigration Customs and Enforcement. But the record shows it has done much more, with its tentacles deep into the Biden Administration.

Data for Progress has infiltrated state-level politics as well, even in Alaska. It gave thousands of dollars to the political action committee called PAC for America’s Future, a hybrid super-PAC that has major funding from donors such as George Soros‘ Democracy PAC.

PAC for America’s Future is under the umbrella of Future Now, an issue advocacy group that also operates with dark money and says it is nonpartisan, but only works to elect Democrats and false-flag independents.

PAC for America’s Future is a major funder of the States Project, which targeted races in Alaska, such as endorsing Rep. Cal Schrage, in order to force a bipartisan coalition in the House and eventually flip the state blue.

Read more about the States Project’s work to flip Alaska with candidates like Schrage, who is featured on the website under the Alaska tab here.

PAC for America’s Future also gave $20,000 to a group that popped up in Alaska calling itself Alaskans for Posterity, (an attempt to confuse the public with the conservative group called Americans for Prosperity.) The Alaskans for Posterity group then used that money to fight Republicans, as detailed in this Must Read Alaska story in 2021. At the time of that MRAK report, this publication was not able to determine the sources of the funds that Alaskans for Posterity were using, but can now link it to the large liberal network of Data for Progress, Tides Advocacy, FTX, Sam Bankman-Fried, and Sean McElwee.


  1. Well, duh.

    The progressives plan and work. The GOP whines. Then ask how they can help the left.

    Nothing stops the right from doing the same, legally, except the right itself.

  2. Want to find the dirt – follow the money… It stinks of swamp mud and commie poop.
    Good reporting Suzanne.

  3. I hear you, Suzanne, and I must say as an ordinary man that the idea of ascribing our shortcomings and failures to others has a certain appeal. And as we “know,” for example, the excuses that Adam and Eve gave for their initial transgressions in the Garden of Eden weren’t sufficient enough to absolve themselves of their sins: “But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die.” Both having eaten of the tree, they were each questioned–each giving an excuse, but neither excuse justifying their actions!

    There is a lesson here somewhere, in that we, too, are accountable for our actions. “He made me do it!” is a detestable excuse used by real losers.

    Regarding flipping Alaska “Blue,” we did that collectively, one vote at a time!

    • And in that quote is revealed the underlying theme of religion; that is for people to be happy to be slaves. What did Adam and Eve supposedly do? They sought out knowledge. What a terrible thing to do! After that, we were all born with original sin. Death, suffering. We’re all scum, wormlike, and outside the grace of a jealous god who determined that we’re in rebellion against him. How he knows this is anyone’s guess but whatever. But hey, we can all relax. Despite all this, the entire universe was made with us in mind.

  4. Valuable reporting. I note that it seems a bit vague in places — but that is the exact intention of the Left – to disguise activities, connections and funding. Individually, the actions do not seem to be that big of a deal but in the aggregate, they are highly influential. One of the really ugly points is how the Left has used false-flag candidates, and in particular for me that means recent “independent” candidates Alyse Galvin and Bear-Doctor Al Gross. (I wonder if Cathy Giessel and Kelly Merrick fit into this situation some way…?)

  5. I understand that Bankman-Fried is quoted as sayinghe gave as much to Republican candidates but that he thinks all reporters are liberals and says he kinda freaked out about that-appears he didn’t want to have to be honest to avoid conflict.

    Suzanne can you look this? That Republicans didn’t get any funding from this entity?

    fyi-personally not supportive of corporate or institutional funding at all for any candidate of anyparty or non-party.

    • His exact words on YouTube are: “All my Republican donations were dark.” He said he won’t publicly disclose the donations because “reporters freak the fuck out if you donate to Republicans.”

      • Well, well, well. He is a known thief, and so we can assume he is also a liar. I’d like to see proof that he donated to Republicans through dark channels.

        Show me the money, SBF or go F yourself. Your word is no good here, and neither is your crypto.

  6. Alaska has been in the crosshairs for several years now. The last big push was bringing in the troops from the lower 48 to gather signatures for RCV. They’ve shut down oil, gas, fishing and crabbing. Mining will remain on a limited scale because China needs precious metals. They have Murkowski paying the displaced workers not to work with her Uncle Joe’s funny money. Alaska is dying a slow death. We will have a Democrat governor in 4 years then it’s done.

    • Just FYI it was SBF’s money that funded the opposition to the ballot measure to adopt RCV by Seattle this last election. Actually he funded a ballot measure to adopt Approval Voting for city primary elections, then the city council added RCV as a ballot option, which wiped out AV by 3 to 1.

    • It was SBF’s money behind the campaign in Seattle AGAINST RCV for city primaries in the recent election. He paid for the signature gathering in favor of putting Approval Voting on the ballot. The city council added RCV as an option and it trounced AV by 3 to 1.

    • MJD, I like your cynical sense of humor!

      As Lewis Carroll wrote, “The time has come the walrus said to talk of many thing….” Carroll may well have eaten oysters; but whether or not he ate frog legs, that certainly would be a different pot of boiling water to speculate upon! Whether the frogs financed the frog feed themselves, the guests would have found that they taste pretty much like chicken (or so I’ve been told).

      In today’s world, like yesteryear’s, there are those who feast and those who are feasted upon. “Dinner” is had everyday! Oysters today, frog legs tomorrow! Thank God there’s something to eat.

  7. Haaland, Buttegieg, drag queen as Asst. Secretary of Health…….. where does Biden get these freaks? No wonder our country is getting flushed down the crapper.

    • Obama is in the shadows. The rest of the country is in the twilight zone. Wake up people. Biden can’t even feed himself.

      Did everyone forget already Biden got 13 of this nations kids killed in his first move as president. 13 of OUR kids. Wake up. Who voted for this lifelong government parasite.

  8. I say Suzanne Downing deserves the highest legitimate journalism award for all of her writings especially this detailed piece on following the money.


  9. Whenever I read these articles that link one shadowy organization to another, then to another, and to another, I feel like some sort of organization chart would help clarify things. Maybe some sort of on-line yarn-wall?

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