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February 26, 2013

N.C. Group Could Lose Foundation Backing Over Attack Memo

Nonprofit policy organization Blueprint North Carolina could lose nearly half its financial support following the leak of a memo it e-mailed to partner groups that called for political attacks on and private investigations of state Republican leaders, says the Charlotte Observer.

The Z. Smith Reynolds Foundation provides $400,000 of Blueprint's nearly budget $1-million budget. Leslie Winner, the foundation's executive director, said she was "surprised and disappointed" by the memo and that her group is "determining our options and our obligations."

Blueprint coordinates activities for a variety of North Carolina advocacy groups. As a 501(c)(3) organization, it is prohibited from engaging in partisan political activity.

The state Republican Party called for an investigation Monday by state elections officials and the Internal Revenue Service, the Raleigh News & Observer writes.

Sean Kosofsky, Blueprint's executive director, contended that it had intended to distribute only a portion of the memo dealing with talking points on progressive policies and that the three-page strategy on weakening Republican Gov. Pat McCrory and GOP legislators was appended by someone aiming to tarnish his group, the Charlotte Observer also reports.