Disgraced Soros-backed activist sits on influential board that determines fate of criminals

She has also been accused by fellow leftists of lying about her Native-American heritage and the amount of time she spent in prison.

Background: Tonja Honsey participates in a recent meeting of the Minnesota Sentencing Guidelines Commission; top right: Honsey's headshot for her Soros Justice Fellowship (Open Society Foundations)

A Soros-backed activist who allegedly lied about her Native-American heritage and headed the Minnesota Freedom Fund (MFF) during its most controversial moments currently sits on the Minnesota Sentencing Guidelines Commission (MSGC).

Tonja Honsey was removed from all her major leadership roles except for one after it was revealed that she allegedly lied to and defrauded those around her. Now, she only sits on the MSGC that Gov. Tim Walz appointed her to, helping to decide what punishments should be available for Minnesota judges to dole out. In this position, she’s presently advocating for a measure that would eliminate stronger sentences for criminals who commit more crimes while on probation or parole.

Honsey got her start founding We Rise!, a now defunct organization that provided support for “justice-involved [criminal] women and non-binary individuals experiencing homelessness.” She used this organization as a springboard to secure a “Soros Justice Fellowship” under billionaire George Soros’s far-left Open Society Foundations.

However, We Rise! dissolved after it was uncovered that she had allegedly lied about her Native-American heritage and the amount of time she spent in prison. (She is a former convict. She just spent most of her time behind bars in county jails, not prisons, as she’s previously claimed.)

A few months earlier, she was booted from the MFF, which she ran during the height of its popularity as it was promoted by all manner of celebrities and politicians, including then candidate Kamala Harris. Under Honsey’s leadership, the fund was accused by the left and the right of apparently pocketing, or at least sitting on, more than $34 million.

The fund has also grabbed countless headlines about the types of people it’s freed. Here are some of the people the MFF has put back on the streets:

  • A man accused of sexually penetrating an eight-year-old girl
  • Numerous serial domestic abusers
  • Several individuals accused of sexual assault
  • A man bailed out twice by the fund who went on to be accused of three more felonies
  • A man who used his freedom to commit murder

Honsey’s name is so marred by controversy that she’s even taken fire from left-wing organizations and mainstream media outlets like The New York Times and Buzzfeed.

In brief: A woman seemingly lied about her race to start an organization for criminal women and non-binary people. She then used this group as a springboard to achieve a Soros fellowship. She eventually found herself at the helm of a multi-million dollar organization that exists to indiscriminately free accused criminals from jail. Both this group and the one she founded ended their relationships with her when her lies were uncovered — but she still wields power at the state level, helping to decide what punishments Minnesota judges are allowed to administer.

Presently, the Center of the American Experiment is circulating a petition Minnesotans can sign to signal their opposition to the new sentencing guidelines that Honsey supports. Minnesotans can also attend the MSGC’s next meeting on Dec. 16 to voice their opposition to the proposed changes.


Kyle Hooten

Kyle Hooten is Managing Editor of Alpha News. His coverage of Minneapolis has been featured on television shows like Tucker Carlson Tonight and in print media outlets like the Wall Street Journal.