How cozy can candidates be with political groups?

By Rachel Baye

A Wisconsin probe into recall campaigns highlights murky rules nationwide about how much candidates and outside groups can coordinate.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Connecticut":

"… dates and supposedly independent groups seemingly work hand in hand, while Connecticut and Minnesota recently affirmed that such groups must keep their distance. …"

"… o support Schauer. Seeking clarity on state rules In April, the DGA sued Connecticut claiming its rules for independent spending by political groups were too v …"

Praise for UK-style health system vindicates spurned nominee

By Wendell Potter

Former Medicare chief's support for UK's health care system may win votes in race for governor of Massachusetts.

Excerpts from this story referencing "president":

"… y.” Obama didn’t give up entirely on Berwick. The Constitution allows presidents to make short-term appointments without Senate approval when Congress is …"

An ethical mess in South Carolina

By Corey Hutchins

A brutal political brawl even by Palmetto State standards.

Excerpts from this story referencing "South Carolina":

"… n a recent Thursday, a light rain was washing against the office window of South Carolina's first-term attorney general, Alan Wilson. On the floor near his desk, ab …"

"… into question. A state court judge who was elected by the legislators — South Carolina is one of just two states that allow that — issued a stunning ruling las …"

"… ken a backseat to an even broader public debate about whether lawmakers in South Carolina are something of a protected class of citizen outside the reach of traditi …"

"… ds this week. The whole sordid stew is raising fundamental concerns about South Carolina’s legislatively dominated government structure, the efficacy of self-pol …"

Lobbyists boost Senate Democrats

By Michael Beckel

Democrats have outraised their GOP counterparts in terms of money coming from lobbyists doubling as fundraisers.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Democratic Party":

"… way by lobbyists. Lobbyist Tony Podesta of the Podesta Group ranked as the Democratic Party’s top fundraising ally on K Street, records show, bundling about $550,00 …"

'Jumbo joints': How big will the newest political animals get?

By Michael Beckel

Supreme Court ruling has emboldened political groups designed to serve as collective fundraising operations.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Democratic Party":

"… before the Supreme Court struck down the aggregate contribution limits.) Democratic Party groups might also create new jumbo-joint fundraising committees to boost t …"

Ready for Hillary courts super PAC skeptics

By Michael Beckel

Ready for Hillary is courting 'Citizens United' skeptics — and finding success.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Democratic Party":

"… lary continues to win over grassroots donors, it is helping mainstream the Democratic Party’s embrace of super PACs. Even as Bremer Muggli — a die-hard Democrat …"

"… h the firm Rising Tide Interactive LLC, which is largely staffed by former Democratic Party campaign operatives. The super PAC also aided Democrat Terry McAulif …"

RGA raises $50 million going into election year

By Ben Wieder

The top outside political spender of 2012 is preparing for a busy 2014, with 36 gubernatorial races this year.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Bob Perry":

"… onors to the RGA in 2013 include David Koch and deceased Republican donors Bob Perry and Harold Simmons, all of whom contributed at least $1 million, according …"

Pro-lesbian super PAC founder and Obama bundler named to top arts post

By Michael Beckel

Pro-lesbian super PAC founder and Obama campaign bundler Laura Ricketts named Kennedy Center trustee.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Barack Obama":

"… government and balancing our nation's budget.”     …"

'Citizens United' ruling helped unions win state elections

By Alan Suderman and Ben Wieder

National unions, business groups focused on states in 2012 elections with unions gaining the edge, new analysis shows.

Excerpts from this story referencing "South Carolina":

"… tside spending in the states is difficult due to weak disclosure rules. In South Carolina, for instance, outside groups are not required to report a dime …"

Koch-backed governors group gives big to Cuccinelli in Virginia

By Rachel Baye

Cuccinelli slams McAuliffe for accepting out-of-state cash while raking in millions from governors association.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Bob Perry":

"… top spot at $1 million each were two Texans, the late Houston homebuilder Bob Perry and billionaire Harold Simmons’ Contran Corp. However, Virginia state r …"

Booker burying Lonegan in super PAC cash dash

By Dave Levinthal

Democratic U.S. Senate hopeful has derided outside money but is greatly benefiting from it.

Excerpts from this story referencing "primary election":

"… he first announced his candidacy in June, with the bulk coming during the primary election that he easily won, according to a Center for Public Integrity analysis of …"

West Virginia races primed for super PAC activity

By Michael Beckel

'West Virginians for Results' registered by D.C. attorney with strong ties to Republicans.

Excerpts from this story referencing "South Carolina":

"… ntial candidate Mitt Romney in 2011, $50 to Republican Gov. Nikki Haley of South Carolina during her 2010 campaign and $1,000 to Virginia GOP Gov. Bob McDonnell dur …"

New super PAC to boost women candidates

By Michael Beckel

Portland-based group cites comedian Stephen Colbert as an inspiration for political advocacy.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Kentucky":

"… he Center for Public Integrity previously reported.     …"

"… , Ore., hopes to play a role in changing that. Alison Lundergan Grimes of Kentucky and Michelle Nunn of Georgia have been endorsed by the More Women in Congr …"

"… Senate — the highest number in the country’s history. In addition to Kentucky and Georgia, two dozen other states have never elected a female U.S. Senat …"

Clinton supporter suspected of illegal donations

By Alan Suderman and Ben Wieder

Clinton's 2008 campaign received $50,000 from "assembly line of illegal campaign contributions."

Excerpts from this story referencing "Norman Hsu":

"… ia reports. Two major Clinton donors associated with those donations, Norman Hsu and William Danielczyk, were later convicted of campaign finance violation …"

Democrats use Kochs to scare up campaign cash after Center report

By Dave Levinthal

Democratic party committees fundraising around record Koch Industries PAC spending.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Koch":

"… n numerous fundraising emails to describe the actions of David and Charles Koch, the billionaire oilmen who rank among conservative interests’ top bankr …"

"… he spending habits of KochPAC, the political action committee sponsored by Koch Industries Inc., which the Koch brothers run. The Center's article also ap …"

"… he political action committee sponsored by Koch Industries Inc., which the Koch brothers run. The Center's article also appeared in the Huffington Po …"

"… 2013’s mid-year campaign finance reporting deadline, repeatedly used the Koch brothers as fundraising tools:     …"

All the presidents' debt

By Dave Levinthal

Gaggle of former White House hopefuls still owe creditors millions of dollars.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Pennsylvania":

"… ;still owes 11 vendors back payments, including more than $430,000 to Pennsylvania-based consulting firm Brabender Cox for media placement and cons …"

Lobbyists make it rain for Democrats

By Michael Beckel

DSCC, DCCC collect nearly $1 million from lobbyist-bundlers during first quarter.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Lindsey Graham":

"… yist-bundlers than any other member of the House ($59,000). Notably, Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., received nearly as much money from lobbyist-bundlers as Menendez …"

Graham's campaign collects bundle from lobbyists

By Michael Beckel

Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., collected 10 percent of campaign cash from lobbyists.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Lindsey Graham":

"… kesman Bishop, not campaign finance reform. …"

Super PACs invest in D.C. Council race

By Michael Beckel

Two groups boosted Republican Patrick Mara during unsuccessful D.C. Council bid.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Democratic Party":

"… ot coordinated with candidates. Bonds' candidacy was endorsed by the D.C. Democratic Party, the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees labor un …"

GOP senators urge FCC to avoid new disclosure rules

By Michael Beckel

13 Republican senators urge FCC to implement no new disclosure rules.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Democratic Party":

"… mendment." The letter also admonishes the FCC not to become an arm of the Democratic Party. "The FCC has a long tradition of being nonpartisan," the letter states. …"

Governors’ groups rely increasingly on 'dark money' affiliates

By Paul Abowd

Powerful state governors' associations are pumping more funds into nonprofit arms.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Iowa":

"… then distributed the funds to three Christian groups focused on unseating Iowa’s Supreme Court justices who had ruled unanimously in 2009 in favor of g …"

"… tion, in turn gave money to support yet another political committee called Iowa for Freedom. Run by Republican and failed gubernatorial candidate Bob Van …"

"… . Run by Republican and failed gubernatorial candidate Bob Vander Plaats, Iowa for Freedom ran ads attacking “liberal, out-of-control judges ignoring o …"

Democrats seeking money for Massachusetts' special Senate election

By Michael Beckel

DSCC solicits funds ahead of Massachusetts special election.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Democratic Party":

"… hand and debts totaling $9.5 million, FEC records show.     …"

Nonprofit spends big on politics despite IRS limitation

By Michael Beckel

Questions raised about whether nonprofits like Koch-connected American Future Fund are primarily about politics.

Excerpts from this story referencing "current president":

"… e Schlinger, the former finance director of Iowa’s Republican Party. Its current president is veteran Republican state Sen. Sandra Greiner, who served for 14 years a …"

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 "Bob Menendez":

"… Hutchison. Cruz will become the third Hispanic in the Senate, joining Sen. Bob Menendez, D-N.J., and Marco Rubio, R-Fla. In Florida, Democratic Sen. …"

Redistricting: GOP and Dems alike have cloaked the process in secrecy

By Nicholas Kusnetz

GOP, Dems alike have cloaked process in secrecy

Excerpts from this story referencing "Democratic Party":

"… own the highway between two semis,” she said, “and those semis are the Democratic Party and the Republican Party.”Ultimately, federal courts rejected some of th …"

Canadian-owned firm's mega-donation to super PAC raises ‘legal red flags’

By Michael Beckel

Foreigners are prohibited from spending money on U.S. elections, law not so clear on foreign corporations.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Democratic Party":

"… ans. Scandal tainted the 1996 re-election of President Bill Clinton after Democratic Party fundraisers accepted millions of dollars from China, Korea and other forei …"

Health insurance PACs have love-hate relationship with health care reform

By Reity O'Brien

Health insurance PACs gave generously to reform opponents while supporting the Obama plan.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Democratic Party":

"… at the nonprofit Consumer Watchdog.At the time the reform law passed, the Democratic Party controlled the White House and both houses of Congress. By supporting the …"

Campaign finance reformers gain new ally

By Michael Beckel

Moderate ex-senator Byron Dorgan joins ranks of campaign finance reforms endorsing public financinig.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Democratic Party":

"… on Cause, we’d welcome him.”Dorgan’s op-ed comes on the heels of the Democratic Party’s national convention in Charlotte, where officials rolled out a platfor …"

House candidates fear super PACs

By Rachael Marcus and Michael Beckel

Super PACs have a disproportionate affect on House races, which are a bargain compared to statewide contests.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Democratic Party":

"… n Post, which calculated that Bishop voted 97 percent of the time with the Democratic Party while Pelosi was House Speaker during the 111th Congress.Meanwhile the can …"

Obama rails against those trying to 'buy this election'

By Michael Beckel

The president blasted big-money politics in his acceptance speech as a Democratic super PAC scrambled to raise more funds.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Bob Perry":

"… donors — that’s how casino magnate Sheldon Adelson, Texas homebuilder Bob Perry and Chicago media mogul Fred Eychaner have become headline fodder.Nonprofi …"