In October, the Trump administration handed out $100,000 of taxpayer dollars to the terror-tied Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), the Middle East Forum has found.
To fund CAIR, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) first awarded monies to the Washington, D.C. government, which then selected CAIR and a number of other extremist organizations as suitable sub-recipients. The federal government would likely have been aware, however, that CAIR was a grantee — according to government documentation, it seems sub-grantees must be approved by DHS before funds are distributed.
The administration’s funding of CAIR was the product of the DHS’s Nonprofit Security Grant Program. As my colleague David Swindle recently wrote in The Daily Wire, Congress’ current proposed expansion of the program’s budget, however “well-meaning,” carries enormous “potential for abuse” and will end up providing “millions of taxpayer dollars” to “pro-jihadist Islamist groups.”
This program and others seem to be doing just that. Additional new federal grants of taxpayers’ money handed out to Islamist organizations include over $57,000 to the Muslim American Society (MAS), a national Islamist organization whose Philadelphia branch hosted an event last year at which young children from an MAS-run school recited poetry about the killing of Jews; and $100,000 to Dar al-Hijrah, a hardline Virginia mosque once home to former al-Qaeda leader Anwar al-Awlaki, and long considered a key terror hub by law enforcement agencies.
Surprisingly, under the Trump administration, grants to extremist organizations have actually increased. As we noted last year, “between 2017 and 2018, the amount of taxpayers’ money given to organizations either influenced or controlled by Islamist activists more than tripled from $4 million to $13.5 million. Under the Obama administration, the amount given to Islamist-linked organizations averaged a mere $1.7 million each year.”
Over the last few months, some supporters of the administration have reacted to our research into public subsidy and political support for these theocratic groups by acknowledging the problem but arguing that, in many instances, the federal government’s embrace of Islamists and its failure to work instead with moderate Muslims is an enduring legacy of extant Obama administration policies.