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Candidates Nonprofits Essay

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Barack Obama
Mitt Romney
Nonprofit Activities
While living in Chicago, directed the Developing Communities Project, a nonprofit organization that works with churches to aid low-income neighborhoods. Headed Illinois Project Vote, which helped register black and low-income voters in Cook county. Served as a board member of the Joyce Foundation and of the Woods Fund of Chicago and board chair for the Chicago Annenberg Challenge, a project to improve public schools. Charitable giving. Mr. Obama and his wife, Michelle, contributed $172,130 to charity in 2011 and $245,075 in 2010, 22 percent and 14 percent of their adjusted gross income, respectively. Was chief executive of the Salt Lake Organizing Committee of the 2002 Winter Olympics. Runs the Tyler Charitable Foundation with his wife, Ann. It had $10-million in assets in 2010 (PDF). Served on the national board of City Year, a nonprofit youth corps, from 1995 to 1999. Served on the board of the Points of Light Foundation, which incorporated the National Volunteer Center—an organization headed for many years by his father, George—from 1995 to 2001. Charitable giving. Mr. Romney and his wife, Ann, contributed $4-million to charity in 2011, about 19 percent of their adjusted gross income. In 2010, they gave almost $3-million, 14 percent of their income.

Record as President/Candidate
Nonprofit issues. Championed and signed into law the Edward M. Kennedy Serve America Act, which called for an expansion of AmeriCorps, the national-service program, from 75,000 to 250,000 members by 2017. It also created the Social Innovation Fund, a new grants program to help nonprofits expand effective programs, and funds to help charities recruit and manage volunteers and to provide management training to small nonprofits. Deficit-cutting pressures in Congress have curtailed much of the spending that was envisaged in the legislation. Created the White House Office of Social Innovation and Civic Participation , a unit that promotes volunteerism, national service, and innovative approaches to social problems. That office oversaw the White House Council for Community Solutions, an advisory panel of nonprofit leaders and others that issued a final report in June about ways nonprofits and others can collaborate to help young people get educated and find jobs. Health Care. Drafted a health-care overhaul law that many nonprofits and foundations support and are helping to put into place. Lobbying. Issued rules limiting the ability of registered lobbyists, including those for nonprofits, to get administration jobs—a...

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