Records reviewed by Mississippi Watchdog show the pro-42 political action committee 42 for Better Schools received nearly $6 million this year, mainly from the New Venture, a Washington, D.C.-based group that says it supports a broad range of left-of-center public policies, including “family planning, alternative energy sources and the reduction of fossil fuels and the support of the Common Core Initiative.” The fund’s board of directors president is Eric Kessler, a special assistant in the Clinton administration.
The pro-42 group received two contributions, one for more than $2.1 million and the other for $427,500 on Oct. 1. On Oct. 23, the New Venture Fund gave more than $1.4 million and added more than $148,000 on Oct. 29, just four days before Election Day. Last year, the New Venture Fund gave 42 for Better Schools $864,500.
Despite a constant barrage of campaign ads on TV, the measure was defeated by more than 27,000 votes, as 52 percent of voters cast ballots against amending the state’s constitution.