Grantee uncovers Publix supermarkets heiress’ role financing Jan. 6 rally

Reporter Anna Massoglia, writing for Open Secrets with one of the Fund’s grants for stories on threats to democracy in the U.S., investigated the opaque network of groups spreading election disinformation, as well as groups that sponsored a rally shortly before the Jan. 6 attack on the Capitol. OpenSecrets  zeroed in on Publix supermarkets heiress Julie Fancelli’s role, revealing that she used a charity to steer much more money than previously known to “dark money” groups involved in pre-attack rally. To undertake the investigation, OpenSecrets spent months obtaining Form 990 tax, data from the Federal Election Commission, state-level campaign finance filings and Federal Communications Commission data, and used CitizenAudit to search for vendor payments and grants. They also drew information from incorporation records, reviewed voluntary corporate disclosures and conducted an in-depth review of deposition transcripts and other records from the House Select Committee to Investigate the January 6th Attack on the United States Capitol.