Patman Committee

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John William Wright Patman bioguide.jpg

The Patman Committee was a select committee which investigated tax-exempt foundations largely in the 1960s. Known as the Select Committee on Small Business and chaired by Texas liberal Democrat Wright Patman from 1955 to 1963,[1] it partially sought to determine whether large foundations used their privileges for the purpose of evading taxes.

Background

The Select Committee to Investigate Tax-Exempt Foundations and Comparable Organizations during the 82nd Congress, known as the Cox Committee, investigated tax-exempt foundations for subversion though did not conduct a thorough investigation. Although its final report exonerated major foundations of wrongdoing,[2] it also recommended a new investigation to probe whether foundations exploited their tax-exempt status.[3]

B. Carroll Reece, a Tennessee conservative Republican who was part of the Cox Committee, successfully sought a do-over to thoroughly investigate subversion charges (the re-enacted select committee in the following 83rd Congress was known as the Reece Committee) though did not focus on the potential tax-exempt exploitation aspect.[3]

Committee composition

The select committee consisted of thirteen members, six Democrats and five Republicans. Patman, the committee chair, was a liberal New Deal populist and segregationist from Texas, and his party colleagues were Joseph L. Evins of Tennessee, Abraham J. Multer of New York, Sidney R. Yates of Illinois, Tom Steed of Oklahoma, James Roosevelt of California, and Dale Alford of Arkansas.[4] The GOP members were William M. McCulloch of Ohio, Arch A. Moore, Jr. of West Virginia, William Avery of Kansas, H. Allen Smith of California, Howard Robsion of New York, and Ralph Harvey of Indiana.

Report

In 1963, a committee report was published which attacked major foundations amidst new taxpayer-subsidized monopolies.[5] It also recommended extensive oversight of institutions who, despite having no ties to the U.S. government, received money funneled by the Central Intelligence Agency.

References

  1. Grant, Jr., Philip A. (September 1, 1995). Patman, John William Wright (1893–1976). Texas State Historical Association. Retrieved September 24, 2021.
  2. FascinatingPolitics (December 22, 2019). The Reece Committee on Foundations: Conspiratorial Nonsense or an Expose of a Threat to the Nation?. Mad Politics: The Bizarre, Fascinating, and Unknown of American Political History. Retrieved September 24, 2021.
  3. 3.0 3.1 Samson, Steven Alan. Charity For All: B. Carroll Reece and the Tax-Exempt Foundations. Liberty University. Retrieved September 24, 2021.
  4. TAX-EXEMPT FOUNDATIONS AND CHARITABLE TRUSTS: THEIR IMPACT ON OUR ECONOMY — CHAIRMAN'S REPORT TO THE SELECT COMMITTEE ON SMALL BUSINESS HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES 87TH CONGRESS. American Deception. Retrieved September 24, 2021.
  5. FascinatingPolitics (July 3, 2021). Texas Legends #7: Wright Patman. Mad Politics: The Bizarre, Fascinating, and Unknown of American Political History. Retrieved September 24, 2021.

External links