Thanksgiving week is typically a time for people to reflect on the blessings they have known and to be grateful for all of the bounty we receive in our lives, so we should kick off Monday morning with just such a story. One person who apparently has a lot to be grateful for is Al Sharpton. The nationally renowned race agitator arranged for some particularly rich blessings last year in the form of a 71% pay raise, made possible largely through the renewed, high profile image he obtained via multiple public appearances with President Barack Obama and New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio. As the New York Post reported over the weekend, it’s high times at the National Action Network.
It pays to have friends in high places.
Al Sharpton gave himself a 71 percent raise last year after his National Action Network group drew a record $6.9 million in donations — as the controversial cleric’s association with Mayor de Blasio and President Obama lent him a newfound air of legitimacy.
De Blasio’s election gave Sharpton a seat at City Hall, as the mayor treated him as an adviser and presented him at a press event next to Police Commissioner Bill Bratton after the death of Eric Garner…
Sharpton’s pay increased from $241,545 in 2013 to $412,644, including a bonus of $64,400, tax filings obtained by The Post show.
As obscene as it may sound to say it, the Black Lives Matter movement has probably been the best thing to happen to the Reverend Al since Tawana Brawley. Ever since the cases of Trayvon Martin and Michael Brown, Sharpton has appeared, almost as if by magic, each time there’s been a police shooting involving a black person. Marches and protests – if not outright riots – generally followed. This has led Sharpton to draw a lot more air time on cable news, as well as prominent placement at the side of figures like de Blasio and the President at multiple events. (You can see a list of some of the more high profile ones at the link.)
It’s also done wonders for his National Action Network in terms of donations. The group took in two million more in 2014 than it had in the previous year to ring up that whopping total of $6.9M. The donations weren’t all coming from the impoverished people Sharpton claims to fight for, either. The list of donors included AT&T, Walmart, McDonald’s, Verizon and GE Asset Management. That’s some lucrative fundraising territory right there.
So what will Reverend Al do with all of this newfound wealth? Well, one thing he hasn’t managed thus far is to pay off all the back taxes he still owes.
NAN didn’t pony up its last installment on the $780,145 it owed the IRS for unpaid payroll taxes until this Oct. 22, the organization’s financial statements show. The nonprofit had racked up unpaid payroll taxes since at least 2003, according to public records.
Sharpton, meanwhile, still has outstanding tax liens of $3.4 million, including money he owes personally to both New York state and the IRS, and taxes owed by his businesses, according to public records. He paid off one federal lien, for $931,398, in April.
We’ve covered Sharpton’s tax woes here ad nauseam, along with the troubles of his daughter, who has collected some cash in unusual ways and seems to be following in the family business. There’s no need to go through them all again here. But hey… it’s good “work” if you can get it, eh? The man certainly has plenty to be thankful for when he carves the holiday bird this Thursday.