Some critics of Glenn Beck’s 8/28 “Restoring Honor” rally (a group that includes me) have also wondered how much of the estimated $2 million cost of the event might be used to pay Sarah Palin‘s speaking fee. While not the main focus of criticism of Beck’s rally, questions about funding for the event have been raised. As it turns out, Palin will not be paid a speaker’s fee, and the charity that’s partnering with Beck on the event does stand to benefit significantly from the event.
MSNBC’s Keith Olbermann and radio host Bill Press discussed the fundraising effort for the event several weeks ago, specifically noting that Beck is paying for the rally out of funds raised, ostensibly, for the Special Operations Warrior Foundation. In an arrangement that is quite commonplace for this kind of event, all donations made through Beck’s rally go to cover the rally’s cost first, and any money left over goes to the charity. To be clear, neither Press nor Olbermann implied that this arrangement was unusual.
Since Beck has ballparked the cost of the rally at $2 million, though, it is fair to ask if this charity’s name is being used on lavish overhead like former Governor Sarah Palin’s customary six-figure speaking fee, and whether the Special Operations Warrior Foundation will actually see a significant benefit from this event.
A source close to the event has verified to Mediaite that Sarah Palin will not be receiving a fee for her appearance at the rally, and that the funds raised will be used for basic overhead such as audio/video equipment, bathroom facilities, and the like. Beck won’t see any of the cash, and has even made a large personal donation, according to the charity.
In fact, the Special Operations Warrior Foundation says that the “Restoring Honor” rally has already netted the charity “just over $2 million,” which means they’ve more than covered the estimated cost of the rally, with a month and a half to spare.
Criticism of the “Restoring Honor” rally has centered around what is seen as Beck’s exploitation, and distortion, of Martin Luther King’s “I have a dream” speech, which took place on the same date, 47 years ago. Many black leaders have denounced the event, organizing events of their own with “all Americans of good will.”
Have a tip we should know? firstname.lastname@example.org