Benenson Strategy Group

A DC public relations firm with a strong partisan tilt. Eleventh in a series.

Thousands of home-based health care providers have been forced into a union because they receive assistance from the state while they take care of loved ones who are disabled. The Service Employees International Union receives close to $6 million annually in forced dues from this abusive arrangement. 

House Bill 4003 would end this injustice by clarifying that Michiganders who care for relatives in their own homes are not government employees, and hence are not appropriate targets for government unions. That bill has passed the House but is stuck in the Senate. While we wait for the Senate to act, the SEIU continues to siphon money that was meant to help families.

Here's another example of where that money might be going, drawn from the SEIU's 2010 LM-2 report:

The Benenson Strategy Group is a public relations firm with offices in New York, Washington, D.C., Denver and Los Angeles. Benenson was the recipient of $271,800 from SEIU in 2010. Benenson was described as doing consulting work and the payments were for "political advocacy".

Benenson has an extensive political practice, and its clientele appears to be disproportionately made up of Democratic groups and elected officials, along with a handful of foreign governments, labor unions and advocacy groups like America Votes and the Working People's Party. The Benenson group claims to have served as the main polling and communications consultant for Barack Obama's presidential campaign in 2008.

SEIU's choice of Benenson as its PR consultant again indicates the extent to which the union is tied in with the Democratic Party and the progressive coalition. This is one of many groups that Michigan taxpayers have been unwittingly supporting with funds that were intended to help the families of people with disabilities.

Tomorrow: Americans United for Change

Previously:

Clean Economy Development Center

Change That Works

Applied Research Center

Brave New Foundation

The Atlas Project

Change.org

SEIU Healthcare Michigan

Ballot Initiative Strategy Center

America Votes

Colorado WINS