Pro-Trump student group Turning Point USA applied for federal coronavirus relief funds then presented its public rejection of the assistance as a principled stand against “big government.”
“For a split second I considered it,” wrote TPUSA chief Charlie Kirk in a Wednesday column on his group’s decision to forgo funds from the Paycheck Protection Program. He said the group would likely have qualified for $1.2 million in assistance. “But then I remembered the source of this unexpected temptation,” Kirk wrote. “How could I possibly accept money from big government when I had spent my entire adult life fighting against it?”
The group said it “declined to participate” in the PPP program, but TPUSA did more than just consider tapping the hundreds of billions of dollars authorized for coronavirus relief by what Kirk dubbed a “giant welfare dependency bill.” It actively applied for PPP funds before turning them down, according to its chief operating officer. “We applied as soon as the gates opened before details were confirmed publicly and digestible (as you remember the bill was huge),” wrote COO Tyler Bowyer in a public post on his Facebook page on Wednesday. But “after researching and seeing the strings attached it is clear this is not the appropriate action,” Bowyer said.