Energy Department inspector blocked from probing dismissal of Hanford engineer

By Julia Harte

Inspector says DOE contracts allowed access to key documents, but Hanford contractors refused to provide them

Excerpts from this story referencing "Bechtel National Inc.":

"… cked from conducting its work by the refusal of primary Hanford contractor Bechtel National Inc., as well as Bechtel subcontractor and Busche’s employer, URS Energy and …"

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 "Mary Landrieu":

"… torm-battered university. The lobbying gambit met with some success: Sen. Mary Landrieu, D-La., successfully included a loan modification plan for the university …"

Flurry of new legislation targets sexual assault on campus

By Kristen Lombardi

New legislation follows landmark Center series

Excerpts from this story referencing "Rape":

"… by all the national attention. In a statement, Scott Berkowitz, of the Rape, Abuse and Incest National Network, who attended the Senate event, said: …"

New scrutiny on campus sexual violence highlights Center findings

By Gordon Witkin

New efforts are aimed at both assisting schools and putting pressure on them to assist victims of sexual violence.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Claire McCaskill":

"… handling of sexual violence and harassment complaints. In Congress, Sen. Claire McCaskill, D-Mo., has led a group of senators researching ways the issue might be ad …"

Financial watchdog held hostage for gold

By Daniel Wagner

Florida senator holds up CFTC nomination over precious metals scams on the elderly.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Federal Trade Commission":

"… by committee staff. Metals investments are regulated by the CFTC and the Federal Trade Commission. The CFTC gained authority to oversee many consumer transactions under the …"

Senate power players quarrel over fate of e-filing

By Michael Beckel

A growing number of senators voluntarily e-file their campaign finance reports. But will the practice ever be mandated?

Excerpts from this story referencing "campaign finance reports":

"… -Ore. Neither senators nor Senate candidates are required to e-file their campaign finance reports — unlike the thousands of political action committees, presidential cand …"

"… the U.S. House of Representatives. Currently, senators must submit their campaign finance reports on paper to the secretary of the Senate, where they are scanned and then f …"

FEC to Claire McCaskill: Show us your money

By Dave Levinthal

Missouri Democrat says missing campaign finance report was lost in the mail

Excerpts from this story referencing "campaign finance reports":

"… debt — money the campaign owes to McCaskill personally. But Senate campaign finance reports submitted electronically are not considered official documents by either t …"

"… slation aimed at requiring themselves and fellow senators to file official campaign finance reports digitally. Most sponsors are Democrats or independents, although several R …"

"… f Iowa, have also signed on. Members of the U.S. House have been e-filing campaign finance reports for years. The six-member FEC in December formally recommended to Congres …"

"… to Congress that it change federal law to require senators to e-file their campaign finance reports — and ditch mailed-in paper documents.     …"

Do senators fear the Internet?

By Rachel Baye

Nearly one-fifth of upper chamber members say they support e-filing campaign finance reports — but won't be this week.

Excerpts from this story referencing "campaign finance reports":

"… axpayers, the U.S. Senate has still yet to pass a requirement that it file campaign finance reports electronically. By Friday, presidential candidates, House candidates, pol …"

"… nkrolling senators’ campaigns. A requirement that senators e-file their campaign finance reports was included in the Senate version of a financial services bill that was f …"

"… cans and two independents. Of those 36 co-sponsors, 22 have not filed past campaign finance reports electronically. And 19 are expected to file the reports due this Friday on …"

"… kota and Ron Wyden of Oregon told the Center for Public Integrity that the campaign finance reports due by Friday would be e-filed. “In this day and age, it makes sense to …"

Top Democratic donor breached aggregate contribution limit last year

By Michael Beckel

Fred Eychaner, the top Democratic super PAC donor in 2012, gave more money to federal candidates than legally allowed.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Paul S. Ryan":

"… h the fine being “proportional to the severity of the violation,” said Paul S. Ryan, an attorney at the nonpartisan Campaign Legal Center. A seemingly minor …"

Security clearance lapses stemmed from Washington’s heedless emphasis on speed over quality

By Rebecca LaFlure

Profits and politics, plus a sudden growth in secrecy-obsessed institutions, played key roles in misguided security clearance decisions.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Office of Personnel Management":

"… , a firm that in 1996 was calved off of an independent agency known as the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) and quickly got most of the background investigation business before …"

Audit reveals widespread problems in security system used by the Navy

By Rebecca LaFlure and R. Jeffrey Smith

The U.S. military is widely using a security system that lets felons onto its bases.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Office of Personnel Management":

"… Merton Miller, Associate Director of Federal Investigative Services of the Office of Personnel Management, the agency that organized the screening of Alexis by a different federal …"

D.C. corruption probe spreads to Hillary Clinton's 2008 campaign

By Michael Beckel and Alan Suderman

New York City businessman pleads guilty for work done in 2008 to support Hillary Clinton.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Democratic presidential candidate":

"… 0:18 p.m.: This post has been updated to reflect the fact that the unnamed Democratic presidential candidate described in court documents was Hillary Clinton. New York City businessm …"

Pentagon may be wasting a billion dollars a year in erroneous payments to contractors

By Richard H.P. Sia

Check-writing mistakes are said to be huge but the military is not tracking the problem closely enough to know for sure.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Tom Carper":

"… o waste and fraud. This is simply unacceptable,” said Committee Chairman Tom Carper, D-Del., who co-sponsored the law with Sen. Susan Collins, R-Maine, and ot …"

Senators investigating Apple own company stock

By Dave Levinthal and Reity O'Brien

Heitkamp, Carper report stock together worth hundreds of thousands of dollars.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Tom Carper":

"… e is in no way impacted by her personal financial holdings.”  Sen. Tom Carper, D-Del., chairman of the Homeland Security and Governmental Affa …"

Washington fury over military sexual assaults hits the Pentagon

By Richard H.P. Sia and Douglas Birch

President Obama calls for punishing, firing or discharging those involved.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Kirsten Gillibrand":

"… er Krusinki's case from the Arlington County police. At the hearing, Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, D-N.Y., raised her voice at Donley, saying that the case sugges …"

Environmental nonprofit makes big ad buy thanking senators

By Michael Beckel

Environmental Defense Fund shows gratitude to senators with a new six-figure ad campaign.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Kay Hagan":

"… s released by the Environmental Defense Fund specifically single out Sens. Kay Hagan, D-N.C.; Tim Kaine, D-Va.; Claire McCaskill, D-Mo.; Jeanne Shaheen, D-N.H. …"

Gay rights lobby courts lawmakers with cash

By Michael Beckel

Human Rights Campaign lobbies Congress, donates to lawmakers, as it makes case for marriage equality.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Claire McCaskill":

"… $1,000, records indicate. The PAC's top beneficiary in February was Sen. Claire McCaskill, D-Mo., who on Sunday announced via her Tumblr page, that her views have " …"

Generals no longer retire to Vermont — they lobby for contractors in Washington

By R. Jeffrey Smith

Retiring generals find comfy work with defense contractors

Excerpts from this story referencing "The Pentagon":

"… e Pentagon may not be “unbiased,” due to their new financial interests.The Pentagon’s rules only require a one-year wait before retired generals can contact …"

Elizabeth Warren, Bruce Mann

Democrats expand Senate grip but fail to win House

By The Associated Press

Democrats solidify their Senate rule but Republicans will still run House in 2nd Obama term

Excerpts from this story referencing "Angus King":

"… f with the Senate Democrats in the past. In Maine, independent former Gov. Angus King was elected to succeed retiring GOP Sen. Olympia Snowe. But King declined …"

Democrats maintain control of Senate

By The Associated Press

Dems win GOP seats in Indiana, Massachusetts; McCaskill survives in Missouri

Excerpts from this story referencing "Utah":

"… asso, and Republican Roger Wicker captured another term in Mississippi. In Utah, Sen. Orrin Hatch won a seventh term and will be the most senior GOP senat …"

Super PACs spend big for Romney in final weeks of campaign

By Michael Beckel and Andrea Fuller

Super PACs and nonprofits spent $190 million in the last three weeks of the election on the presidential race

Excerpts from this story referencing "Afghanistan":

"… the real waste,” says the David Nasse, a veteran of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.Rachael Marcus contributed to this report. …"

Daily Disclosure: Virginia politics is for haters, not lovers

By Rachael Marcus

Heavyweight outside spending groups jumped into the U.S. Senate race in Virginia this week.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Virginia":

"… headed by animal rights activist Julie Caramante.  …"

"… an anti-Kaine ad Wednesday that suggests he favors “union bosses” over Virginia jobs. (The Chamber released a similar ad the same day attacking Sen. Bill …"

"… focused two on criticizing Kaine. “Cost” hits Kaine for “not putting Virginia first” by voting to cut back spending on defense, an industry that emplo …"

"… by voting to cut back spending on defense, an industry that employs many Virginians. “Pledged” criticizes Kaine for “higher taxes, reckless spending ( …"

Akin wins Missouri Senate primary, Dems get their wish

By Michael Beckel and John Dunbar

Evangelical Christian congressman wins GOP Senate primary in Missouri free-for-all.

Excerpts from this story referencing "John Brunner":

"… as endorsed by former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, and millionaire businessman John Brunner.With all precincts reporting, Akin won 36 percent of the vote, Brunner fin …"

Outside groups spend $2.2 million in Missouri Senate race

By Michael Beckel

Attack ads by Republican and Democratic super PACs may lead to a dark-horse winner in Missouri GOP Senate primary.

Excerpts from this story referencing "John Brunner":

"… ative ads, according to a Center for Public Integrity analysis.Businessman John Brunner and former state treasurer Sarah Steelman have been savaged by ads paid fo …"

Daily Disclosure: Dem super PAC wants to avoid Brunner in Missouri

By Rachael Marcus

A Democratic super PAC is spending heavily against businessman John Brunner who has yet to win the GOP nomination.

Excerpts from this story referencing "John Brunner":

"… nt to face in the Missouri race for U.S. Senate — Republican businessman John Brunner.Majority PAC, a super PAC that supports Democratic candidates for U.S. Sen …"

Bipartisan group of lawmakers demands better Pentagon auditing

By Zach Toombs

A Republican-led effort threatens to block major weapons systems if the military services cannot account properly for their expenditures.

Excerpts from this story referencing "The Pentagon":

"… h new accounting software systems have led to $8 billion in cost overruns. The Pentagon’s inspector general said recently that deadlines for completing the work …"

Study: Medicare contractors vulnerable to conflict

By The Associated Press

Report: Contractors hired to weed out Medicare fraud have connections to cos. they investigate

Excerpts from this story referencing "Tom Carper":

"… report concludes.The study was commissioned by Sens. Max Baucus, D-Mont., Tom Carper, D-Del., and Claire McCaskill, D-Mo.Carper said it is critical to improve …"

Nonprofits outspent super PACs in 2010, trend may continue

By Michael Beckel

Increasingly active nonprofit groups act just like super PACs but don't reveal donors.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Federal Election Commission":

"… groups that never publicly disclosed their funders, the joint analysis of Federal Election Commission data found. Another $8 million came from groups that only partially reveal …"

Billions of dollars for fancy software and where has it gotten them?

By R. Jeffrey Smith

New army and air force software produces errors not efficiency

Excerpts from this story referencing "Tom Carper":

"… cularly as we grapple with a record federal debt and deficit,” said Sen. Tom Carper (D-Del.), chairman of the federal financial management subcommit …"

Fine line between politics and issues spending by secretive 501(c)(4) groups

By Peter H. Stone

Tax-exempt nonprofits are reporting only a fraction of what they're raising and spending

Excerpts from this story referencing "American Crossroads":

"… ds GPS, a c4 launched by Rove and Gillespie, and its affiliated Super PAC, American Crossroads. A Super PAC can take unlimited checks but must disclose the names of dono …"

"… oup's general expenditures.For instance, Crossroads GPS and its affiliated American Crossroads reported to the FEC that it spent a total of $38.6 million on ads in 2010. …"

"… ssue advocacy guidelines and therefore were not disclosed to the FEC, American Crossroads president Steven Law said.  Last summer’s $20 million ad blitz by G …"