Romney's top fundraisers consider bailing

By Carrie Levine

As the GOP's 2012 presidential nominee considers another bid, Jeb Bush and other 2016 hopefuls try to poach top fundraisers.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Politics":

"… s working to clinch the nomination, according to the Center for Responsive Politics, which tracks campaign finance data. Romney’s own campaign committee ra …"

"… full 2012 election cycle, according to the Center for Responsive Politics, and President Barack Obama’s campaign committee raised $715 million for …"

"… a co-chair of Romney’s 2012 campaign, recently told Bloomberg Politics he was “not happy” with Romney’s re-emergence as a potential 2016 ca …"

IRS rarely audits nonprofits for politicking

By Julie Patel

New documents show the federal tax agency almost never audits nonprofit groups for illegal politicking.

Excerpts from this story referencing "John Koskinen":

"… educing agency funding to 2008 levels. It’s a decision IRS Commissioner John Koskinen says will result in hiring freezes and further job losses. “The nu …"

Why industry is trying to tell you how to think

By Erin Quinn, Chris Young and Kimberley Porteous

How we investigated the top message peddlers influencing public policy — and why you should care.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Washington":

"… rt of our “Consider the Source” team. It’s intended to shed light on Washington’s political messaging industry essentially. So we’ll be taking a compr …"

Who needs lobbyists? See what big business spends to win American minds

By Erin Quinn and Chris Young

Trade groups pay top PR, advertising firms $1.2 billion over five years to influence public.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Center for Responsive Politics":

"… ions that spent more than $1 million on lobbying in 2012, according to the Center for Responsive Politics. [See Methodology.] Edelman’s lucrative contracts with the American Pet …"

"… declined steadily, falling to $3.2 billion in 2013, according to the Center for Responsive Politics. The total number of registered lobbyists has also dropped. Some say the …"

American Future Fund: No election, little cash

By Carrie Levine

American Future Fund's income plummeted in 2013 — a non-election year — after massive haul in 2012.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Center for Responsive Politics":

"… arrow (D-Ga.), who lost, according to campaign finance data tracked by the Center for Responsive Politics. The group also spent more than $360,000 on broadcast TV ads to boost Rep …"

Koch-linked operative mum on mystery millions

By Michael Beckel

Sean Noble oversaw a seven-figure grant to American Commitment, which says it wasn't the beneficiary. So where did the money go?

Excerpts from this story referencing "Politics":

"… pparent discrepancy, which was first reported by the Center for Responsive Politics, American Commitment President Phil Kerpen said his group didn’t get the …"

Luxembourg tax deals for Disney, Koch brothers empires revealed

By Alison Fitzgerald and Marina Walker Guevara

New leak discloses secret tax agreements between major American companies and Luxembourg.

Excerpts from this story referencing "United States":

"… ts Luxembourg operations.  Koch says Invista is headquartered in the United States. However, U.S. and other operations are owned by a holding company incorpo …"

"… Koch Industries is the second-largest privately owned company in the United States, according to Forbes, and it is not required to report its financial infor …"

Election ads were about issues, says 'Carolina Rising' chief

By Carrie Levine

'Dark money' nonprofit spends millions backing candidate but says ads are about issues.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Thom Tillis":

"… tip the balance in favor of the Republican candidate. State House Speaker Thom Tillis, the Republican, was running against Democratic incumbent Sen. Kay Hagan i …"

Governors and oil industry work hand in hand in offshore drilling group

By Nicholas Kusnetz

Lobbying firm, advocacy organization did much of the work.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Nikki Haley":

"… rs during a December meeting. They also gave more than $8,300 to Gov. Nikki Haley of South Carolina within a day of a coalition meeting that Haley attended, …"

Conservative group fumbles disclosure in new tax document

By Michael Beckel

Koch-linked nonprofit American Commitment to amend tax documents after questions from the Center for Public Integrity.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Phil Kerpen":

"… this week from the Center for Public Integrity. The nonprofit — led by Phil Kerpen and receiving the majority of its funding from groups within the political …"

Crossroads GPS' cash plummeted in 2013

By Carrie Levine

Conservative nonprofit's income drop coincided with a non-election year.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Center for Responsive Politics":

"… spending a combined $176.4 million on the 2012 elections, according to the Center for Responsive Politics. Roughly $70 million of that was spent by Crossroads GPS. The groups’ mo …"

Gillespie's rich friends leave him hanging

By Carrie Levine

Consummate GOP insider Ed Gillespie nearly wins Virginia Senate seat, no thanks to his deep-pocketed friends.

Excerpts from this story referencing "lobbyist":

"… rossroads co-founder, former Republican National Committee chairman and ex-lobbyist would have trouble attracting big money. Conventional wisdom was off on b …"

GOP rides cavalry to U.S. Senate majority

By Michael Beckel, Dave Levinthal and Carrie Levine

Super PACs, 'dark money' nonprofits help make Election Day difference as Republicans seize a U.S. Senate majority

Excerpts from this story referencing "Scott Brown":

"… he Granite State, incumbent Sen. Jeanne Shaheen kept Republican challenger Scott Brown, who previously represented Massachusetts in the U.S. Senate, at bay. And …"

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 "Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee":

"… ublican candidates as opposed to promoting Democratic candidates. Only the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee — a national party committee founded in 1916 that, as its name …"

Election 2014 by the numbers

By Michael Beckel

A new Center for Public Integrity money-in-politics index highlights key facts about the most expensive midterm in history.

Excerpts from this story referencing "North Carolina":

"… , on average, sponsored by outside spending groups: 38 Percentage in North Carolina’s Senate race: 55 Chance that a Senate-focused TV ad sponsored by a cand …"

"… th Dakota’s Senate race: 61 Percentage of positive TV ads aired in North Carolina’s Senate race: 18 Number of key Senate races in which “dark money” …"

"… tic-aligned dark money groups have aired more ads than GOP ones: 0 Amount North Carolina’s two major Senate candidates have raised as of mid-October: $32 million …"

"… utside groups have told the Federal Election Commission they’ve spent on North Carolina’s Senate race: $76 million Ratio by which Sen. Kay Hagan, D-N.C., …"

'Banking Caucus' member aims for Senate

By Alison Fitzgerald

Republican candidate for Senate U.S. Rep. Shelley Moore Capito defends little banks but big banks benefit too.

Excerpts from this story referencing "New York":

"… cal action committees of Citigroup, Goldman Sachs, Wells Fargo and Bank of New York Mellon are among the top 20 donors to Capito’s Senate run, according to …"

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 "Service Employees International Union":

"… illions from unions, including more than $1.2 million from a branch of the Service Employees International Union. Getting around the limits Even in states with contribution restrictions …"

Secret politics pervade popular companies

By Dave Levinthal

Some well-known brands keep their political spending secret while others are more forthcoming, new survey shows.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission":

"… received significant attention since 2010, when the Supreme Court’s Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission decision granted them powerful spending freedoms. Corporations may n …"

In Kansas, Democratic donors invest in uncertainty

By Michael Beckel

Independent Senate candidate Greg Orman lures left-leaning donors despite uncertainty about whether he'll caucus with Democrats.

Excerpts from this story referencing "John Kerry":

"… as an independent, Conn has previously donated to Democrats such as Obama, John Kerry and Rep. Walter Minnick of Idaho. This year, he’s donated $5,200 to Orma …"

Can this 'dark money' group help the Democrats keep the Senate?

By Michael Beckel

Patriot Majority USA raises millions from unknown sources to play attack dog in the South.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Arkansas":

"… rk money which is corrupting our elections.” The Senate races raging in Arkansas, Louisiana and North Carolina are of particular interest to Patriot Majori …"

"… The group has accounted for about one out of every nine ads aired in the Arkansas Senate race, one of every eight in Louisiana and one of every 13 in North …"

"… defeat of political candidates — or simply praise or criticize them. In Arkansas in particular, Patriot Majority USA has for months branded Rep. Tom Cotton …"

"… ust can’t trust” and criticized him for voting against the farm bill. Arkansas Democratic Party spokesman Patrick Burgwinkle welcomes Patriot Majority US …"

Russian bank hires two former U.S. senators

By Alexander Cohen

U.S. sanctions against Russia are becoming a boon for Washington's lobbyists.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Center for Responsive Politics":

"… petitioning former colleagues on behalf of clients, according to the Center for Responsive Politics. In 2008, they started a lobbying firm with their sons, Breaux Lott Leader …"

Lobbying disclosures leave public in the dark

By Marcelo Rochabrun and Dave Levinthal

Despite efforts to beef up laws regulating lobbyists, public is in the dark when it comes to what firms are up to in Washington.

Excerpts from this story referencing "U.S. Department of Justice":

"… changing federal law to put lobbying enforcement in the hands of the main U.S. Department of Justice, not the U.S. Attorney for the District of Columbia. Craig Holman, a lobb …"

Outsiders dominate Alaska's Senate race

By Michael Beckel

Washington, D.C.-based groups are dominating the airwaves in the Last Frontier, home to one of the nation's most contested Senate races.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Americans for Prosperity":

"… uting the Republican frontrunner, Dan Sullivan. Three of these groups — Americans for Prosperity, Freedom Partners and the American Energy Alliance —  fall within c …"

Political nonprofits bungle IRS filings

By Michael Beckel

High-profile groups such as Crossroads GPS and Patriot Majority USA acknowledged mistakes after Center for Public Integrity inquiry.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission":

"… nbsp;first reported Wednesday. Ever since the U.S. Supreme Court’s Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission ruling in 2010, social welfare nonprofits — which are organize …"

Koch-backed seniors group low-balling election spending?

By Michael Beckel

The 60 Plus Association tells the IRS it barely spends money on politics — despite funding millions in candidate attack ads.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission":

"… r year. This funding spike roughly aligns with the U.S. Supreme Court’s Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission decision in 2010, which allowed nonprofits like the 60 Plus Association to …"

Lobbying activity declines among top special interests

By Dave Levinthal

Three-fifths of nation's top 100 lobbying entities spent less on influence in the second quarter compared to a year ago.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Politics":

"… sis of new congressional disclosure reports and Center for Responsive Politics data. Spending by several others remained stagnant. Unlike last year …"

Four years after passage, House keeps trying to kill Dodd-Frank

By Jared Bennett

On the fourth anniversary of the passage of landmark financial reform law, opponents still trying to kill it.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Center for Responsive Politics":

"… ted almost $248 million to political campaigns, according to data from the Center for Responsive Politics, more than any industry. While most of these proposals probably don’t h …"

How to fix the IRS nonprofit division

By Julie Patel

Employees, reformers offer three recommendations for improving the agency's flagging nonprofit division.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Center for Responsive Politics":

"… 2 election cycle, a presidential election year, according to data from the Center for Responsive Politics. Create a regulatory agency for nonprofits — one separate from the IRS. …"

Hobbled IRS can't stem 'dark money' flow

By Julie Patel

Budget and staffing cuts, endless congressional investigations keep IRS from investigating activities of political nonprofits.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Congress":

"… e 2010 election. Then the IRS tea party scandal exploded. Republicans in Congress began waylaying the IRS over what they said was the systematic and inexcus …"

"… ng the names of their donors secret. The tea party scandal, combined with Congress systematically stripping the IRS of resources and clout over decades, has …"

"… their evolution. Responding to business complaints about the arrangement, Congress in 1950 passed a law levying taxes on nonprofits’ “unrelated business …"

"… lect tax dollars, the IRS itself is receiving fewer and fewer of them from Congress. The IRS’ approved budget for the 2014 fiscal year is $11.3 b …"

The beautification of Thad Cochran

By Dave Levinthal

Senator's supporters suddenly turn cheery in final bid to save Mississippi mainstay's job.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Center for Responsive Politics":

"… p;in a U.S. Senate primary since the 2010 election cycle, according to the Center for Responsive Politics. The winner of tonight's runoff faces Democrat Travis Childers, a former …"

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