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 "Congress":

"… wins in November — a decision that could determine which party controls Congress’ upper chamber. But such uncertainty hasn’t dulled enthusiasm from so …"

"… is election cycle, Ortner has donated a combined $54,900 to the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee and the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee, …"

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 "Congress":

"… according to the U.S. Justice Department. On Sept. 19, however, half the Congress voted unanimously to prevent federal contractors that process security cle …"

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 "Congress":

"… he referred to warheads as “kumquats” throughout his manuscript. Even Congress has been coy on the subject. When the Senate Foreign Relations Committee p …"

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 "Congress":

"… so competing in Tuesday’s GOP primary. Despite serving New Hampshire in Congress for nearly two decades, including two terms in the U.S. Senate, his latest …"

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 "Congress":

"… reportedly intend to spend $290 million to help Republicans make gains in Congress this November. Thus far, Kantar Media/CMAG spending estimates indicate the …"

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 "Congress":

"… who are seeking to pick up six Senate seats in November to win control of Congress’ upper chamber and who have generally seen more support from dark money …"

"… ,” Burgwinkle said. “That’s why it’s important to have groups hold Congressman Cotton accountable to his reckless positions.” A spokesman for Cotto …"

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 "Congress":

"… o keep this Senate seat blue. …"

"… s that will likely determine which party will control the upper chamber of Congress during the final two years of Obama’s presidency. 1) North Carolina Dem …"

"… castrating hogs among her credentials for knowing how to “cut pork” in Congress. About 31,500 ads from candidates, parties and other politically active g …"

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 "Congress":

"… public service almost a decade ago and are among more than 300 members of Congress who’ve become lobbyists, and begun petitioning former colleagues on beha …"

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

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 "National Broadband Plan":

"… the state laws, said Blair Levin, a former lawyer who oversaw the FCC’s National Broadband Plan in 2010, which laid out a road map for providing universal Internet access …"

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 "Congress":

"…  upon its introduction, would help create the “most open and honest Congress in history.” President George W. Bush said upon signing it int …"

"… nto law that it didn’t go far enough, and that he would “work with the Congress to improve upon this legislation.” At first, the reforms showed promise …"

"… ’s disclosure requirements. They also avoid the ban on buying members of Congress meals and gifts by throwing lavish campaign fundraisers for …"

"… y. The U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Columbia is tasked by Congress with investigating potential violations of the Lobbying Disclosure Act, mo …"

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 "Congress":

"… until 2030 — 13 years later than projected in 2009, the year before Congress passed the Affordable Care Act. While it’s uncertain how much of that g …"

"… hts Center and Social Security Works — released a report suggesting that Congress could save taxpayers $141 billion over 10 years just by reauthorizing a pr …"

"… in the first year of the Part D program. The groups also recommended that Congress allow Medicare to create its own drug insurance plan that could directly n …"

"… s also contributed to soaring health care costs, especially for Medicare. Congress has also allowed health insurers to enrich themselves, in both lawful and …"

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 "Congress":

"… l War and civil-rights eras. “I think the president and the majority of Congress, both in the House and Senate, are just completely out of touch with how p …"

"… n state, relying on the Constitution's interstate commerce clause. It says Congress can regulate trade between states, but says nothing about trade within sta …"

"… ewtown shooting, a time of renewed advocacy for gun control legislation by Congress.With federal gun laws staying in the news and the nullification trend spre …"

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 "Congress":

"… lion worth of weapons to Iraq. According to a July report by the Congressional Research Service, prior to the U.S. withdrawal in December 2011, Iraq …"

"… deal worth $6.17 billion, the CRS report said, but delivery was held up by Congress until recently over concerns that the government might use them in sectari …"

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 "Congress":

"… lethal pathogens has been expanding rapidly. According to a 2013 report to Congress, the number of these labs grew by almost 10 percent, from 1,362 to 1,495, …"

"… y disease agents — squirreled away in cold storage. It also comes after Congress in January created an independent commission to consider consolidating or …"

"… narrow focus on their part of the problem, and so each agency has gone to Congress and gotten funding to do x, y and z,” Kingsbury told the Center. “Ther …"

"… add to the confusion, Kingsbury said there are multiple committees within Congress that have oversight of the agencies that have laboratories or want them, m …"

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 "Congress":

"… e legal authority to impose sanctions on Medicare Advantage carriers. When Congress created the Medicare Advantage option in 2003, it gave CMS that power, thu …"

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 "Michael Bloomberg":

"… e Everytown for Gun Safety, the group backed by former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, say they are moving the needle. “Now, for the first time in our countr …"

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 …"

National Academy of Sciences agrees with EPA that formaldehyde causes cancer

By David Heath

To the chemical industry's chagrin, a National Academy of Sciences review found that formaldehyde causes cancer.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Congress":

"… hief lobby group, the American Chemistry Council, has persuaded members of Congress that the findings of both the Environmental Protection Agency and the Depa …"

"… d by Robust Science.” Part of the disparity is that in the 2011 report, Congress asked the academy only to critique the EPA’s draft assessment rather tha …"

"… its negative assessment of arsenic over to the academy. At the same time, Congress also insisted that the EPA redo all ongoing assessments to address the cri …"

How Medicare Advantage plans code for cash

By Fred Schulte

Federal study criticizes Medicare Advantage and calls for changes.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Congress":

"… Further policy changes will likely be necessary,” the study concludes. Congress created Medicare Advantage in 2003 to encourage private insurance companie …"

"… stry and the fear of angering seniors also has largely quieted concerns in Congress that Medicare Advantage plans can be a poor value for taxpayers. Congress …"

"… Congress that Medicare Advantage plans can be a poor value for taxpayers. Congress recognized problems with Medicare Advantage coding as far back as 2005, wh …"

Nuclear weapons lab employee fired after publishing scathing critique of the arms race

By Douglas Birch

Los Alamos lets a 17-year employee go after retroactively classifying his published article.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Congress":

"… on to his 2010 article for Defense News proposing that Congress set aside $75 million to $100 million annually for research into new techn …"

Flurry of new legislation targets sexual assault on campus

By Kristen Lombardi

New legislation follows landmark Center series

Excerpts from this story referencing "Congress":

"… presents the first of two anticipated pieces of legislation: this morning, Congresswoman Carolyn Maloney, D-N.Y., announced that, following the August summer …"

"… , August 1, 2014 at 1:23pm: Maloney's office announced on July 31 that the Congresswoman had filed the House companion version before the August summer recess …"

"… d upside down. “The legislative proposals currently being considered by Congress deal more with the gaps in federal enforcement identified by the Center fo …"

"… ese bills signify that campus sexual violence has become a top priority in Congress.” He and other advocates who have worked for decades to highlight the p …"

Obama curbs nuclear security goals as bomb-building budget grows

By Douglas Birch

The White House rejected a confidential proposal to accelerate work on nuclear security problems despite a missed 2013 deadline.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Congress":

"… g on the nuclear arsenal are frequent. For the current year, fiscal 2014, Congress authorized $1.95 billion in spending by the NNSA on nonproliferation progr …"

"… blood -- could wreak havoc in a major city. Budget documents submitted to Congress by the administration also contain no mention of the proposed goals of rem …"

Message-maven culture killing compromise in Washington

By Wendell Potter

Commentary: Political foes prefer to score points rather than work together on solutions.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Congress":

"… a commentary shortly after his testimony, Lilly added that, “The current Congressional budget process is too elaborate, too time consuming and worse off con …"

"… dded.) Lilly’s words could have applied to every other issue members of Congress take up, especially health care. Had message-makers not been in control of …"

"… rocess of exploring options for legislation at the time. Actual bills that Congress would ultimately vote for or against would not materialize for many months …"

"… ear. The Words That Work boxes that follow are already being used by a few Congressional and Senatorial Republicans. From today forward they should be used by …"

Campaign shenanigans are top targets for Office of Congressional Ethics

By Dave Levinthal

Office of Congressional Ethics investigates House members' campaign shenanigans more than any other alleged violation.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Congress":

"… o industry-bestowed cigar. Since early 2009, nearly half of the Office of Congressional Ethics' investigations into U.S. House members and staff involve elec …"

"… to a new report the independent office published this week. The Office of Congressional Ethics — the U.S. House's independent, internal watchdog — has be …"

"… matters, is slapping political committees with fewer and fewer penalties. Congress grants the Office of Congressional Ethics the jurisdiction to investigate …"

"… committees with fewer and fewer penalties. Congress grants the Office of Congressional Ethics the jurisdiction to investigate any alleged violation of a "la …"

Chattanooga asks FCC for help in spreading broadband

By Allan Holmes and Amirah Al Idrus

Industry-backed law prohibits expansion of cities' Internet service

Excerpts from this story referencing "Congress":

"… lina has similar restrictions. These restrictions frustrate the intent of Congress, which is to ensure that every American has access to broadband, the Chatt …"

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 "Congress":

"… cond-quarter income. …"

"… veral others remained stagnant. Unlike last year at this time, members of Congress are more concerned about getting re-elected than passing legislation. The …"

"… s second quarter. Last year “was the biggest year on gun legislation in Congress in two decades, and NAGR was the main player in defeating every gun contro …"

"… es to lobby heavily on “critical job creation issues being considered by Congress,” such as transportation, infrastructure, energy and trade matters, Holm …"

Lawmakers issue dueling Dodd-Frank reports

By Jared Bennett

Republicans say the financial reform law creates a bailout fund. Democrats says the 4-year-old law makes banks safer.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Congress":

"… blican administration of George W. Bush, with the blessing of a Democratic Congress, created a $700 billion fund to bail out banks and other financial firms t …"

"… f the financial industry. The "banking caucus" includes Democrats. Former Congressman Barney Frank, D-Mass., who was co-author of the reform law, will defend …"