Surprise! No. 1 super PAC backs Democrats

By Carrie Levine and Dave Levinthal

To the surprise of many, the top-spending super PAC this election backs Democrats, not Republicans.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Kay Hagan":

"… , who’s locked in a statistical dead heat with incumbent Democratic Sen. Kay Hagan. Senate Majority PAC’s dominance this cycle shows Democrats have largel …"

Mega-donors give big to state candidates

By Rachel Baye, Reity O'Brien and Ben Wieder

More than two dozen donors have given at least $1 million to state-level campaigns ahead of Nov. 4.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Chicago":

"… all to fund her own campaign, only to lose in the Republican primary; And Chicago-based hedge fund manager Ken Griffin, who has given more than $4.7 million …"

"… on from the Democratic Governors Association, more than $755,000 from Chicago media mogul Fred Eychaner and millions from unions, including more than $1 …"

Power shifts to outsiders in U.S. Senate fight

By Michael Beckel

Battle for control determined in large part by big-spending super PACs and nonprofits.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Georgia":

"… enate-focused TV ads that have so far aired in Alaska, Arkansas, Colorado, Georgia, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Michigan, North Carolina, New Hampshir …"

Pennsylvania super PAC gets 'dark money' infusion

By Michael Beckel

Nonprofit Green Orchard Inc. is listed as the sole donor to new Prosperity for Pennsylvania super PAC.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Virginia":

"… ary of Green Orchard’s financial largess last year was the YG Network, a Virginia-based nonprofit closely aligned with former Republican House Majority Lead …"

"… It received $1 million. Its second-largest contribution: $900,000 to the Virginia-based Legislative Education Action Drive, which "seeks to enhance the deba …"

"… of the Prosperity for Pennsylvania super PAC. Dion, now a partner at the Virginia-based firm Revolution Agency, did not immediately respond to a request for …"

Secretive groups spend millions to influence state elections

By Reity O'Brien

Nonprofits hit TV airwaves with attacks on state-level candidates, gaining traction since the U.S. Supreme Court 'Citizens United' decision.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Law Enforcement Alliance of America":

"… gubernatorial and Arkansas attorney general contests this cycle. The Law Enforcement Alliance of America, another Virginia-based nonprofit was active in Michigan’s state supreme …"

'Outside' groups swamp Florida's airwaves in race for governor

By Rachel Baye

Lax laws allow candidates to work so closely with outside groups, contribution limits become almost irrelevant.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Republican Party of Florida":

"… S filings. The Republican Governors Association also gave $225,000 to the Republican Party of Florida in December, and the party has given nearly $3.5 million to Scott’s camp …"

"… ocratic Party, plus the roughly $9.8 million worth of ads sponsored by the Republican Party of Florida, account for roughly 59 percent of the television spending in the governor …"

More than a dozen states could throw out donation caps after McCutcheon ruling

By Michael Beckel

A Supreme Court ruling elminating aggregate limits on campaign contributions invalidates similar rules in states.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Wisconsin":

"… aid. Connecticut, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New York, Rhode Island, Wisconsin, Wyoming and the District of Columbia all currently have laws on the books …"

"… of a lawsuit.” Officials in Connecticut, Maine, New York, Rhode Island, Wisconsin and Washington, D.C., also said they were reviewing the Supreme Court’s …"

Outside groups dwarf candidate spending in Florida special election

By Michael Beckel

Less than one-third of money pumped into House contest is controlled by Sink or Jolly.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Federal Election Commission":

"… the big-money era following the U.S. Supreme Court’s Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission decision in January 2010. And the national stakes aren't even that high: …"

Zombie super PACs face termination

By Dave Levinthal

Federal regulators put hundreds of obscure political committees on notice for disclosure failures.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Ann Ravel":

"… nterviews today, FEC Chairman Lee Goodman, a Republican, and Vice Chairman Ann Ravel, a Democrat, said the agency would also seek to dispatch super PACs that d …"

How Washington starves its election watchdog

By Dave Levinthal

Agency hamstrung by political bickering, case backlogs, staff departures — even Chinese hackers.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Internal Revenue Service":

"… nonprofit organizations to disclose their donors. It’s an issue that the Internal Revenue Service, not the FEC, is now poised to tackle next year, having just announced pro …"

Regulators to axe secretive super PAC

By Dave Levinthal

FEC says Texas-based group that won't file disclosures is violating the law.

Was the glut of outside spending in 2012 state races just the start?

By Bill Buzenberg

You can expect more money — and ads — pouring into state races next year based on new Center analysis of 2012 election.

Excerpts from this story referencing "federal races":

"… hey don’t coordinate with campaigns. The ruling had a powerful impact on federal races but also made it easier than ever for outside groups to raise and spend ca …"

Why 'McCutcheon' won't stop the influx of cash into politics

By Bill Buzenberg

Even if the FEC wins its Supreme Court case, super PACs and other groups will still be allowed to spend big in elections.

Excerpts from this story referencing "California":

"… sedly coined by Big Daddy Jesse Unruh, a feisty Democratic politician from California. If so, we have an awful lot of it pouring into our elections — and we m …"

Supreme Court 'McCutcheon' case could aid GOP

By Michael Beckel

Conservative donors who maxed out during the 2012 election far outnumbered liberals.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Illinois":

"… g the 2012 election cycle, including hedge fund executive John Canning and Illinois businessman Richard Uihlein, a major donor to conservative causes such as …"

Five money-in-politics facts about John Lewis

By Michael Beckel

That's one of five money-and-politics facts you'll learn here about civil rights icon Rep. John Lewis, D-Ga.

A hyper-super PAC boosts McAuliffe in Virginia race

By Adam Wollner

Democratic group making donations — illegal at the federal level — to Virginia gubernatorial candidate McAuliffe.

William Koch emerges from shadow of famous siblings

By Michael Beckel

William Koch's steadily increasing political activity has gotten relatively little notice compared to that of brothers Charles and David.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Mitt Romney":

"… n — went to Restore Our Future, the main super PAC supporting Republican Mitt Romney’s unsuccessful presidential bid. Meanwhile, $500,000 went to a group tha …"

State campaign contribution limits on the rise

By Adam Wollner

Individual campaign contribution limits are on the rise as states hedge against super PACs.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Tennessee":

"… its if they were coupled with measures requiring greater transparency. In Tennessee, the state’s House of Representatives in mid-April narrowly rejected a R …"

"… en permitted to make campaign donations — activity illegal under current Tennessee law. “The people of Tennessee don’t want this because they know that …"

"… ations — activity illegal under current Tennessee law. “The people of Tennessee don’t want this because they know that money corrupts,” said Mike Turn …"

Justice for sale in state supreme court elections?

By Bill Buzenberg

Outside groups are funneling more and more money into state races, which is a trend the Center will be following.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Federal Communications Commission":

"… ysis of campaign finance reports, tax records and documents filed with the Federal Communications Commission. Tracking all outside spending is nearly impossible thanks to lax state d …"

Without better laws, "dark money" groups will prosper in 2014 state races

By Bill Buzenberg

Without better campaign finance laws, "dark money" groups will prosper in 2014 state races

Excerpts from this story referencing "federal races":

"… ns United decision in 2010 added about $1 billion in spending to federal races in the 2012 election cycle and led to unlimited spending by individuals, c …"

Lax state rules provide cover for sponsors of attack ads

By Alan Suderman

In 30 states it’s impossible to total how much money outside groups are spending on campaigns.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Delaware":

"… s to disclose which candidate they are targeting. Two states, Florida and Delaware, require that spending be made public but not the targets or the purpose o …"

Shaun McCutcheon hopes donation in S. Carolina election will be first of many nationwide

By Michael Beckel and Dave Levinthal

Alabama man bent on campaign finance deregulation kicks off election cycle with South Carolina contribution.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Nikki Haley":

"… st today in the Republican primary to replace Rep. Tim Scott, R-S.C. Gov. Nikki Haley elevated Scott to the U.S. Senate after the resignation of Sen. Jim DeMint …"

Donor profile: William S. Rose (Specialty Group)

By Michael Beckel

Quick stats on the biggest financial backers of Election 2012.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Tennessee":

"… office.” Business records show that Specialty Group registered with the Tennessee Secretary of State on Sept. 26. On Nov. 28, the company changed its name t …"

Donor profile: AFSCME

By Reity O'Brien

Quick stats on the biggest financial backers of Election 2012.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Wisconsin":

"… the role just a few weeks after the failed AFSCME-backed effort to unseat Wisconsin’s Republican Gov. Scott Walker in a recall election. The contest attract …"

"… eller, R-Nev. — AFSCME spent nearly $2 million attacking him — and the Wisconsin Senate race, where the union spent $1.8 million to take down Republican ca …"

Donor profile: American Federation of Teachers

By Paul Abowd and Alexandra Duszak

Quick stats on the biggest financial backers of Election 2012.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Federal Election Commission":

"… Center for Responsive Politics and Center for Public Integrity analysis of Federal Election Commission records. Totals include contributions from individuals, family members and …"

Donor profile: Plumbers and Pipefitters Union

By Paul Abowd

Quick stats on the biggest financial backers of Election 2012

Super PACs, nonprofits favored Romney over Obama

By Michael Beckel and Russ Choma

Funds from outside contributors neutralized Obama's fundraising advantage.

Donor profile: Joe Ricketts

By Reity O'Brien

Quick stats on the biggest financial backers of Election 2012.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Wall Street Journal":

"… t Obama and $2 million to bankroll Republicans in congressional races, the Wall Street Journal reported. In 1975, Ricketts founded Omaha First Securities, a small inves …"

Donor profile: United Auto Workers

By Alexandra Duszak

Quick stats on the biggest financial backers of Election 2012.

The ‘Citizens United’ decision and why it matters

By John Dunbar

Sometimes donor disclosure reveals little.

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