Even The Grinch Would Like This: MoveOn Raising Money For Troops

Remember that whole "General Betray Us" advertisement back in September that criticized Army Gen. David Petraeus?

Well MoveOn.org, that scourge of the right wing, is raising money like crazy for a Christmas gift for the troops.

In the past 24 hours, MoveOn, perhaps the most powerful liberal advocacy group in the country, has raised $275,000 for the United Services Organizations (USO) for calling cards for U.S. soldiers in Iraq and Afghanistan. The USO may be most associated with Bob Hope-type visits to troops overseas, but the non-partisan organization is clearly comfortable partnering with MoveOn if the cause helps soldiers stationed overseas during the holidays.

MoveOn.org emailed its 3.3 million members this week asking them to donate $15 for the USO's Operation Phone Home program, and the membership rapidly responded with the donations. MoveOn conducted a similar operation a few years ago around Christmas time when its members donated 16 million frequent flier miles to the troops.

Eli Pariser, the executive director of MoveOn.org's Civic Action program, says the group sees no inconsistency between its anti-war political message and its Christmas generosity for the troops.

"A lot of our members are veterans or military families, so the war affects them personally," Pariser said in a phone interview with Politico. "We wanted to do something that was very direct in terms of helping those in harms way. It's very clear for our members that you can support the troops and be against the war."