Top Democrats and environmental groups connected to left-wing activist and former Bernie Sanders adviser Tara Houska are keeping silent following revelations that a bail fund she founded has not accounted for millions in contributions.
The Freshet Collective, which provided legal support for Dakota Access Pipeline protesters, had just over $2 million in net assets at the end of the 2017 fiscal year. Four years on, however, it's not clear what became of those funds, a Washington Free Beacon review found. A nonprofit charity watchdog told the Free Beacon that Freshet has a duty to be forthcoming about its finances and identified other operational deficiencies.
Houska is a progressive darling who advised Sen. Sanders's (I., Vt.) 2016 Democratic presidential campaign and is connected to members of the House's so-called Squad. The environmental group ecoAmerica this year awarded Houska its 2021 American Climate Leadership Award.
Of late, Houska has focused on stopping the ongoing renovation of Line 3, a crude oil pipeline that connects extraction sites in Canada with refinement facilities in the United States. She appeared at an anti-Line 3 event on Sept. 4 in Minnesota with Democratic representatives and "Squad" members Ilhan Omar (Minn.), Ayanna Pressley (Mass.), Rashida Tlaib (Mich.), and Cori Bush (Mo.).