Voter fraud enthusiast Stacey Abrams was an “integral part” of her private company’s ability to obtain state contracts in 2013 that ultimately boosted profits while she was a state lawmaker, according to a Government Accountability Institute (GAI) investigation.
The investigation’s findings, detailed on Fox News by former Rep. Jason Chaffetz, a GAI distinguished fellow, provide revelations of the role Abrams had in securing her company’s contracts for government-backed loans while Abrams was serving as Democrat minority leader in the Georgia House from 2011 to 2017.
Abrams cofounded the financial services company NOWaccount, now known as Now Corp., in 2010 with business partners Lara Hodgson and John Hayes. Its stated purpose was to help small businesses grow, which it would do by loaning the businesses money upfront for invoices the businesses were awaiting payment on. NOWaccount would eventually secure state contracts in 2014 that allowed it to use federal taxpayer dollars to replenish loans left unpaid.
GAI obtained documents, Chaffetz wrote, that revealed “Abrams was an integral part of the application process related to a state government small business loan program that would benefit NOWaccount.”
Abrams was, for instance, touted as a “key manager” on one of the entities’ applications that was submitted to the Georgia DCA, an application that was approved in April 2014.
The special negotiations with the Georgia DCA “put taxpayers on the hook for loans approved by NOWaccount that were not paid,” he continued. “This benefited NOWaccount’s bottom line and Abrams’ investment in the company.”
GAI discovered that Abrams’ business partner wrote in a Harvard Business School case study that the federal loan program allowed NOWaccount “to scale faster because the government is in the first-loss position, not our lenders.” Chaffetz explained of that finding, “In other words, with taxpayers on the hook for bad loans, the company could more easily attract investors.”
The federally funded loan program ended in 2017, Chaffetz noted, but Abrams’ company, which she still maintains a stake in, appears to be growing as two investment companies just poured $29 million into the business, presently known as Now Corp.