Super PACs exploit disclosure loophole

By Dave Levinthal

Several political committees that materialized in recent days aren't required to reveal donors until after Election Day.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Congress":

"… eir donors during the final weeks of a major election, when the control of Congress is at stake, is "damaging" and undermines the core of our campaign laws an …"

"… ompliance at campaign consulting firm Aristotle, disagrees. He argues that Congress would need to pass a law requiring late-filing super PACs to disclosue don …"

GAO takes on Medicare Advantage spending

By Fred Schulte

GAO will investigate program spending.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Health":

"… attorney with the Center for Medicare Advocacy in Washington. America’s Health Insurance Plans, the industry’s trade group, wouldn’t comment on the G …"

"… y lobbied to scale back planned pay cuts to the Health plans. America’s Health Insurance Plans, the industry trade group, spent nearly $5 million lobbyin …"

A call for more scrutiny of private Medicare Advantage plans

By Fred Schulte

Researchers say aggressive billing by private plans may require more scrutiny

Excerpts from this story referencing "Center for Public Integrity":

"… k score] adjustment,” Kronick said in response to questions posed by the Center for Public Integrity. (Kronick required that questions be submitted in writing and responded to …"

"… s and that results in massive profits across a population over time.” A Center for Public Integrity investigation published in June found that Medicare made ne …"

"… ther positively or negatively, on health care quality,” Kronick told the Center for Public Integrity. Kronick said that the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, the ar …"

"… or may not be coming down the road,” said spokesman Raymond Thorn. (The Center for Public Integrity in May sued CMS under the Freedom of Information Act to compel the agency …"

California coverage plan for undocumented echoes earlier call by Schwarzenegger

By Wendell Potter

Commentary: former governor supported plan allowing coverage for undocumented residents.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Health":

"… s law does allow the undocumented to receive state-funded care through the Health Safety Net program for low-income persons). Schwarzenegger was feeling pre …"

"… ented immigrants is nearly a billion dollars a year,” Schwarzenegger’s Health and Human Services Secretary, Kim Belshe, told PBS NewsHour’s Gwen Ifill …"

"… . Among the many businesses and organizations supporting Lara’s bill is Health Access California, a statewide Health care consumer advocacy coalition. " …"

"… munities, and they need to be fully included in our Health system, too,” Health Access executive director Anthony Wright told me. “This (expanding cover …"

How a coal miner's autopsy proved a top doctor wrong

By Chris Hamby

When a coal miner's lungs finally gave out, his autopsy proved a top doctor was wrong — giving hope to thousands of other miners.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Health":

"… -ray-reading program at the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH), which licenses physicians such as Wheeler to examine films for bl …"

A life-and-death struggle for asylum in America

By Susan Ferriss and Amy Isackson

Teens' tortured road to asylum in America.

Excerpts from this story referencing "United States":

"… om violence so chilling her family thought it better to smuggle her to the United States in the spring of 2013. “Two years ago a friend of mine died in a very c …"

"… whatever they need to say to get to stay here because the President of the United States has told them, in no uncertain terms: If they get here, he won’t enforce …"

"… illed him. She also said she was threatened for testifying and fled to the United States. Her case had previously reached the Board of Immigration Appeals, the BI …"

"… , fearing his son would be killed, arranged to have him smuggled up to the United States. The asylum officer asked Francisco details about various parts of his st …"

Obamacare helps millions, but falls short in many ways

By Wendell Potter

The Affordable Care Act has reduced the ranks of the uninsured, but cost of care must be addressed.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Health":

"… in: An Insurance Company Insider Speaks Out on How Corporate PR is Killing Health Care and Deceiving Americans and Obamacare: What’s in It for M …"

Investigators find Islamic State used ammo made in 21 countries, including America

By Julia Harte and R. Jeffrey Smith

A new report from an arms tracking group highlights how easily munitions shipped to the Middle East shift from one owner to another.

Excerpts from this story referencing "weapons systems":

"… ing Iraqi security forces, and a sizable chunk of the small arms and other weapons systems it handed over is now unaccounted for, in the wake of ISIS’s seizure of …"

Open pits offer cheap disposal for fracking sludge, but health worries mount

By David Hasemyer and Zahra Hirji

Air emissions from oil and gas waste are among the least regulated, least monitored and least understood components of the fracking boom.

Excerpts from this story referencing "oil":

"… waste facility that will receive millions of barrels of toxic sludge from oil and gas production for disposal in enormous open-air pits is taking shape …"

"… he faces an uphill battle. In Texas, as in most states, air emissions from oil and gas waste are among the least regulated, least monitored and least und …"

"… ngress and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency made decades ago, when oil and gas producers lobbied hard to get most of their waste exempted from fe …"

"… humans. The EPA estimated that without the exemption, 10 to 70 percent of oil and gas waste could be considered hazardous. Still, the report recommende …"

Eyeballs burn in North Carolina, Iowa ahead of U.S. Senate elections

By Michael Beckel

Last week, North Carolina, Iowa residents saw three political ads focused on contentious Senate elections every five minutes.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Federal Election Commission":

"… n pro-Tillis issue ads, according to filings in September submitted to the Federal Election Commission. It also aired a number of ads praising Tillis in August, but because the …"

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 "Politics":

"… ampaign Committee, according to data provided by the Center for Responsive Politics and a Center for Public Integrity review of Federal Election Commission fi …"

U.S. Senate passes bill curtailing conflicts of interest in security clearance contracts

By Julia Harte

Firms no longer would be allowed to rate their own work

Excerpts from this story referencing "Obama administration":

"… p in the right direction, and I’m pleased it’s moving forward.” The Obama administration says it supports the reform. “We applaud Senator Tester and the other me …"

Iowa, Michigan bombarded with political ads

By Michael Beckel

Open-seat Senate battles in Iowa and Michigan have attracted a flurry of TV ads.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Michigan":

"… ust so expensive to get on TV,” he said. …"

"… . That’s nearly one ad every two minutes. The Senate races in Iowa and Michigan — both are open-seat contests because Democratic incumbents are retiring …"

"… st six seats in November to wrest control of the Senate from Democrats. In Michigan, Democratic Rep. Gary Peters is facing off against former Secretary of Sta …"

"… erm. Nevertheless, Land’s campaign was not the top sponsor of TV ads in Michigan’s Senate race from Sept. 9 through Sept. 15. That distinction belongs t …"

The 47-year-old nuclear elephant in the room

By Douglas Birch and R. Jeffrey Smith

A growing number of U.S. experts say that feigning ignorance about Israel’s nuclear arsenal creates more trouble than it averts.

Excerpts from this story referencing "United States":

"… world’s “worst-kept secrets” dates from a political deal between the United States and Israel in the late 1960s. Its consequence has been to help Israel main …"

"… pons, a widespread consensus exists in the region and among experts in the United States that Israel possesses a number of nuclear weapons. For Israel’s neighbor …"

"… ould not test its nuclear weapons or announce it possessed them, while the United States wouldn’t press Israel to give them up or to sign the Non-Proliferation T …"

"… ma’s top advisor on nuclear nonproliferation from 2009 to 2013, said the United States has long preferred that Israel hold to its policy of amimut, out of concer …"

In New Hampshire, quixotic super PAC shaking up Republican primary

By Dave Levinthal

Big-spending Mayday PAC giving Jim Rubens an unexpected boost — and Scott Brown a headache — ahead of GOP primary.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Federal Election Commission":

"… t group can scramble a critical Senate race in the post-Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission era of increasingly deregulated political money and campaign finance exoti …"

"… hand than Brown’s campaign, $4.27 million to $1.19 million, according to Federal Election Commission filings. “If Brown doesn’t come out of the primary with a fairly reso …"

GOP’s Senate hopes energized by Koch network ad blitz

By Michael Beckel

How many TV ads have groups connected to the billionaire brothers aired in your state?

Excerpts from this story referencing "president":

"… rofound manner. In an interview with C-SPAN last month, Tim Phillips, the president of Americans for Prosperity, acknowledged that “it’s very difficult to …"

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 "Politics":

"… fied as a contributor to Patriot Majority USA by the Center for Responsive Politics. Greg Crist, a spokesman for the American Health Care Association, declin …"

Why Republican control of Congress hinges on nine big-money Senate races

By Michael Beckel and Dave Levinthal

Nine big-money Senate races will determine whether Republicans control both chambers of Congress.

Excerpts from this story referencing "West Virginia":

"… an and Montana. Thanks to retirements of Democratic lawmakers in Montana, West Virginia and South Dakota, the GOP looks poised to pick up at least three seats. M …"

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 "oil":

"… ent should reimburse $50 billion to certain shareholders of former Russian oil company Yukos. The tribunal said the government, in a series of actions st …"

"… d seized the assets of Yukos and transferred them to Gazprom and state-run oil company Rosneft. Last month, Russian gas firm OAO Novatek retained&n …"

How big telecom smothers city-run broadband

By Allan Holmes

Municipal broadband boosts business, but often stops at city limits thanks to lobbying muscle of telecom giants.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Internet service":

"… ade sense that the city of Tullahoma be able to offer its local high-speed Internet service to areas beyond the city limits. After all, many of her rural constituent …"

"… uence state elections and buy research to try to stop the spread of public Internet services that often offer faster speeds at cheaper rates. The companies have succ …"

"… iduals who are concerned about wasteful duplication of existing or planned Internet service.” The group’s IRS Form 990 for 2012 shows it gave between $5,000 and …"

"… ing to attract technology companies including a large data center, but the Internet service from Charter won’t support such data-hungry businesses. The only network …"

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 "Craig Holman":

"… epartment of Justice, not the U.S. Attorney for the District of Columbia. Craig Holman, a lobbyist with Public Citizen, supports one working model that already e …"

Docs, drug companies, insurers drive up Medicare costs

By Wendell Potter

Commentary: reform drove down hospital costs, creating Medicare savings, but insurers, doctors and drug companies escaped cuts.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Medicare Advantage":

"… to provide incentives for health insurance companies to participate in the Medicare Advantage program and administer the Medicare drug program. The Affordable Care Act …"

"… ch themselves, in both lawful and unlawful ways, since the creation of the Medicare Advantage program in 1997.  Under this program, Medicare pays privately run he …"

"… CPI investigation uncovered as much as $70 billion of improper payments to Medicare Advantage plans from 2008 through last year. Will Congress act to save taxpayers bi …"

U.S. now faces threat of U.S.-made weapons in Iraq

By Douglas Birch

Islamic State fighters seize U.S. military equipment in Iraq, become targets for U.S. warplanes.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Barack Obama":

"… d dispatching more than 1,000 troops there as military advisers, President Barack Obama has sent U.S. forces back to a conflict that many Americans wanted to forg …"

State lawmakers take aim at federal gun control

By Justine McDaniel, Robby Korth and Jessica Boehm

A growing collection of state legislatures seeks to disqualify federal gun control laws

Excerpts from this story referencing "Wyoming":

"… says federal regulation doesn’t apply to guns manufactured in the state. Wyoming, South Dakota and Arizona have had laws protecting “firearms freedom” …"

Growing number of biosafety labs raises public health concern

By James Arkin

Construction of new biosafety labs a waste of money, possible threat to public health, say reports and experts.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Secretary":

"… in part to reduce duplication of efforts. At their first meeting in July, Secretary of Energy Ernest Moniz said he hoped the panel would come up with a “str …"

Medicare Advantage patients find themselves in regulatory limbo

By Fred Schulte

States lack oversight but feds are struggling to keep with fast-growing health plans.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Health":

"… Jepsen called for federal officials to “aggressively scrutinize” UnitedHealthcare’s decision to drop a large number of doctors from its Medicare Advan …"

Decades old gun control debate reshaped by new advocacy groups

The gun control movement has made significant gains in recent years, but the NRA remains king of the hill

Excerpts from this story referencing "Federal Election Commission":

"… lion; the NRA had spent nearly $2.7 million, according to filings with the Federal Election Commission. With some groups’ finances remaining a mystery, the numbers are inconc …"

Washington's cynical misinformation game

By Wendell Potter

Commentary: the role of distortion in health care politics.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Congress":

"… ational Journal article about a new tactic used by the National Republican Congressional Committee to attack Democratic candidates. Earlier this year, the NRC …"

"… h insurers or that the spot was part of a continuing effort by AHIP to get Congress to eliminate a fee that was imposed on insurers to help offset the cost of …"

"… Washington with NFIB staff during which we planned a campaign to make sure Congress did not pass a Patient’s Bill of Rights. Insurers worried that a provisi …"

Russian gas company hires D.C. lobbyists

By Alexander Cohen

D.C. firm will fight U.S. sanctions

Excerpts from this story referencing "Sri Lanka":

"… s and individuals.” Among its other clients are Saudi Arabia, Venezuela, Sri Lanka and Bahrain. The news was first reported by the National Journal. Accordi …"

Dire predictions of endless waits for a doctor have proven unfounded

By Wendell Potter

Commentary: Obamacare has not resulted in long waits for a doctor.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Health":

"… out. To find out if the critics’ were prescient or way off base, Kaiser Health News reporter Phil Galewitz went looking for problems. He didn’t find ma …"

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