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 "UPS":

"… ocratic politicians. The PACs share an official address — a mailbox at a UPS Store along Pennsylvania Avenue in Washington, D.C. The creator and treas …"

GAO takes on Medicare Advantage spending

By Fred Schulte

GAO will investigate program spending.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Government Accountability Office":

"… mistakes estimated to cost taxpayers billions of dollars every year. The Government Accountability Office, the watchdog arm of Congress, is conducting the probe at the request of t …"

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 "Washington":

"… ect scam,” said Patrick Burns, co-director of Taxpayers Against Fraud in Washington. “You simply systematically up-code conditions and that results in massi …"

"… g involved, the Medicare Advantage payment dispute is the sort of issue in Washington that barely registers outside of a small circle of policy wonks and indust …"

"… y lobbyists, who often rule the day in influencing government policy. In a Washington meeting last week, executives of the two biggest Medicare Advantage plans, …"

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 "physician":

"… e underwent an exam by a doctor of the company’s choosing, and even this physician found severe black lung. In late September, a Labor Department claims exa …"

"… ional Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH), which licenses physicians such as Wheeler to examine films for black lung and similar diseases. Par …"

"… utopsy report supports these texts and the reports of Parker and the other physicians who saw black lung. For example, evaluating a 2005 CT scan, Wheeler note …"

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 "Insurance":

"… years to come. Wendell Potter is the author of Deadly Spin: An Insurance Company Insider Speaks Out on How Corporate PR is Killing Health Care and …"

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 "Pentagon":

"… t respond to questions about the company’s ownership or its work for the Pentagon. But he said, “There are many United States businesses, including wholes …"

"… nse goods and services — weapons and training — are coordinated by the Pentagon’s Defense Security Cooperation Agency. When a weapon is sold or given by …"

"… om 2003 to 2008, said that during this period, he struggled to catalog all Pentagon-funded arms shipments, which arrived in the country in a disorganized stat …"

"… that full capacity." Islamic State fighters may have anticipated that the Pentagon will make a renewed effort to track whether its future arms shipments stay …"

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 "dangerous chemicals":

"… , and Wilson worries that the ever-present Texas wind will carry traces of dangerous chemicals, including benzene, to the school. “Many of these students live outside …"

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 "Karl Rove":

"… including American Crossroads, the super PAC co-founded by GOP strategist Karl Rove, the National Republican Senatorial Committee and the U.S. Chamber of Comm …"

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 "spokesman":

"… nd September 2012, according to the complaint. Earlier this month, a USIS spokesman confirmed reports that OPM had decided not to renew any of its c …"

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 "Congress":

"… o of the nation’s hottest as Republicans battle Democrats for control of Congress’ upper chamber. Voters have been “inundated with advertising,” said …"

"… hat primarily slammed Land’s candidacy. “Michigan needs a leader like Congressman Gary Peters, who will stand up for Michigan families and take on the sp …"

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 "Iraq":

"… 3, Argentina from attacking British territory in the 1982 Falklands War or Iraq from attacking Israel during the 1991 Gulf War,” Doyle said in a bitingl …"

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 "Massachusetts":

"… to a little-known challenger.  Scott Brown, the former senator from Massachusetts who lost his seat in 2012, is expected to win the New Hampshire's GOP prim …"

"… n wildly different. It’s massive departure from 2012 re-election bid in Massachusetts, as then, Brown cast himself as a novel kind of campaign finance reformer. …"

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 "Thom Tillis":

"… on — about three-and-a-half times the amount raised by her GOP opponent, Thom Tillis. Meanwhile, both Udall of Colorado and Alaska’s Begich had each raised …"

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 "Harry Reid":

"… ed Patriot Majority USA is led by a staunch ally of Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., who has demonized the Koch brothers as “un-American” and rail …"

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 "CEO":

"… ainst one another. The Democratic Party has rallied behind Michelle Nunn, CEO of the Points of Light Foundation and daughter of former Sen. Sam Nunn. Nu …"

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 "Ukraine":

"… ), a Russian bank targeted with sanctions by President Obama over the Ukraine crisis, has hired two former U.S. senators to lobby against those sanction …"

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 "Wake County":

"… cted to the North Carolina General Assembly in 2010, Rep. Marilyn Avila, a Wake County Republican, introduced a bill that would prevent cities from building or e …"

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 "Louisiana":

"… ly describe its federal lobbying efforts on behalf of Xavier University of Louisiana, the firm used the vaguely worded phrase: “Hurricane Katrina related rec …"

"… e of earmarking appropriation bills.” In a lobbying proposal in 2008 to Louisiana-based building securities firm MBI Global, Patton Boggs said it could help …"

"… efforts would remove “a serious economic burden” from Xavier and other Louisiana schools, which she thanked for their “partnership.” Never mentioned i …"

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 "Center for Public Integrity":

"… ays privately run health plans a set monthly rate for each patient. As the Center for Public Integrity reported in a series of investigative reports this past June, about 16 mil …"

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 "director":

"… should be called the Gun Violence Preservation Act,” said Jonathan Lowy, director of the center’s Legal Action Project. Two types of bills are the primar …"

"… eral gun law, none of that,” said Mike Maharrey, national communications director of the Tenth Amendment Center, a for-profit nullification group based in C …"

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 "F-16":

"… ment. The CRS said Iraq has also struck a deal to pay $6.5 billion for 36 F-16 combat aircraft, the first of which scheduled for delivery next month. The …"

"… combat aircraft, the first of which scheduled for delivery next month. The F-16s were supposed to be based at Balad Air Base north of Baghdad, but InsideD …"

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 "California":

"… oups, Nuclear Watch New Mexico and Tri-Valley CAREs, located in Livermore, California. In the environmental assessment, Los Alamos’ management said that rese …"

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 "Congress":

"… a Washington, D.C., public relations firm to lobby the administration and Congress after one of its largest shareholders, an associate of Russian president V …"

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 "Congress":

"… ge would be alleviated, the AAMC says, if rather then repealing Obamacare, Congress would lift a freeze in Medicare’s support for physician-training positio …"

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