Public Interest Legal Foundation

SOURCE:  Wikipedia, 2020-06-09

  • Funded (in part) by the Bradley Foundation.

    The Public Interest Legal Foundation (PILF) is an American conservative legal group based in Indianapolis, Indiana, which is known for suing states and local governments to purge voters from election rolls.PILF has made false claims about the extent of voter fraud in the United States. PILF has published the information of eligible voters online, including Social Security numbers, falsely accusing them of being fraudulent voters.

    PILF was constituted in 2012 to "assist states and others" to fight "lawlessness" in American elections. PILF asserts that "large numbers of ineligible aliens are registering to vote and casting ballots", although lists that they have displayed of such supposed voters prove to actually include American natives who are eligible voters. PILF said their lists had been based on state government lists of declared "non-citizens" removed from local voter rolls. Some U.S. citizens were wrongfully purged in the process.


    PILF's current president and general counsel, J. Christian Adams. Adams published the information of eligible voters online, including Social Security numbers, falsely accusing them of being fraudulent voters. One such voter was a U.S. missionary in Guatemala whom Adams inaccurately highlighted as a fraudulent voter in a Washington Times article. Adams has described those who say there is no comprehensive proof of systemic voter fraud as "flat-earthers." In 2017, Adams was chosen by President Donald Trump to be a member of his election integrity commission. Adams opposes automatic voter registration, saying that voter registration should require "forethought and initiative, something lacking in large segments of the Democrat base."

    PILF has sent mailings to hundreds of counties claiming that their voting rolls are provably corrupt; Politifact has judged these claims to be "false," stating that "inactive" registrants should not be counted with "active" ones when calculating total rates of voter registration. PILF originally flagged jurisdictions with more registered voters than resident adults, according to annual U.S. Census population estimates at the time. ProPublica found major counting errors in PILF's use of government data; PILF subsequently corrected its analysis.

    PILF primarily litigates federal claims concerning the National Voter Registration Act of 1993 (NVRA) (52 U.S.C. §§ 20501-20511) and the Voting Rights Act of 1965 52 U.S.C. § 10101. PILF promotes active or former involvement in cases in Texas, North Carolina, Florida, Pennsylvania, Indiana, Nevada, Virginia, Kansas, D.C., and Mississippi. PILF has filed documents in favor of a Florida law barring ex-convicts who owe fines from voting. PILF has also participated as a primary party or intervenor in the U.S. Third Circuit Court of Appeals, Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals, and the Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit. PILF also submits amicus curiae briefs to the U.S. Supreme Court on election-related issues.

    Board of Directors

    Cleta Mitchell

  • [2020-08-24]  Federal prosecutors have Steve Bannon's murky nonprofit in their sights.  Tucked at the bottom of the long indictment against Bannon, prosecutors say they want to seize the assets of his nonprofit "Citizens of the American Republic," shedding more light on the secretive political group's finances.

    Additional Reading

    Return to