New FEC chief on 'dark money' mission

By Dave Levinthal

New Chairwoman Ann Ravel says she'll fight to out people behind secretive political cash, regardless of party.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Atlanta":

"… sive “listening tour” schedule that this year has taken her to Denver, Atlanta and Chicago.   “Dark money — it’s an issue that’s been of gr …"

U.S. Senate races to attract 1 million TV ads

By Michael Beckel and Dave Levinthal

Super PACs, nonprofits help fuel relentlessly negative messaging in U.S. Senate races.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Kay Hagan":

"… he U.S. Senate. North Carolina’s race between incumbent Democratic Sen. Kay Hagan and Thom Tillis, her Republican rival, drew more ads last week than any ot …"

FEC's top Democrat takes show on road

By Dave Levinthal

Vice Chairwoman Ann Ravel will criss-cross the country in bid to boost her agency's profile and tout merits of disclosure.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission":

"… -awaited measure that aligns FEC regulations with the Supreme Court's Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission decision. (A similar measure addressing the more recent McCutcheon v. Fede …"

Democrats seize air supremacy in Senate battlegrounds

By Dave Levinthal and Michael Beckel

Liberals aired more TV ads last week than their conservative foils in seven of the nine top Senate battlegrounds races.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Federal Election Commission":

"… ical spending freedoms created by the Supreme Court’s Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission decision of 2010, said John Carroll, a mass communications professor at Bo …"

States urged to embrace alternatives to school discipline criminalizing kids

By Susan Ferriss

The Council of State Governments warns that harsh school dicipline disproportionately harms ethnic minority, disabled and LBGT students.

Excerpts from this story referencing "director":

"… cent reduction in expulsions at last count, according to Michael Thompson, director of the Council of State Governments Justice Center, which produced the rep …"

EPA plan would slash climate-damaging carbon emissions from 1,000 existing power plants

The EPA on Monday proposed the first-ever limits on greenhouse gas emissions from existing power plants.

Excerpts from this story referencing "America":

"… o into effect, the administration for all intents and purposes is creating America’s next energy crisis,” said Mike Duncan of the American Coalition for …"

"… ses is creating America’s next energy crisis,” said Mike Duncan of the American Coalition for Clean Coal Electricity, the coal industry’s most public v …"

Groups seek EPA action on toxic air emissions from fracking

By Jim Morris

Sixty-four environmental and community groups on Tuesday petitioned the EPA to clamp down on toxic air emissions from fracking operations.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Environment":

"… egulation, 64 Environmental and community groups on Tuesday petitioned the Environmental Protection Agency to clamp down on toxic air emissions from oil and gas …"

Gordon Witkin named Center's top editor

Former U.S. News & World Report editor takes over as executive editor.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Denver":

"… itkin served as a regional correspondent in Detroit and as bureau chief in Denver, before coming to Washington in 1987. He covered criminal justice for 11 y …"

Casinos and offshore companies battle for billions in online gambling push

By Nicholas Kusnetz

Congress, states and a rich mix of characters argue over regulation.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Illinois":

"… lotteries wanted to use that opening to sell tickets online. New York and Illinois asked the Justice Department whether such a move would be legal, and in la …"

"… nternet gambling this year, including Massachusetts, California, Illinois, Iowa, Minnesota and Mississippi, where a bill was introduced but failed t …"

Residents of polluted U.S. communities fear planned cuts in EPA enforcement

By Ronnie Greene and Chris Hamby

The EPA's "Next Generation Compliance" plan would lead to fewer inspections of, and enforcement actions against, polluters.

Excerpts from this story referencing "New Mexico":

"… forcement. And what is the message you are sending to the communities?" …"

"… increase compliance with environmental laws.” Environmental worries in New Mexico, New York The EPA’s Giles, in her write-up in the environmental publica …"

"… es say some of the neediest communities could be left out. One example: In New Mexico, where Native-American communities confront pollution concerns. “Electr …"

"… o the Internet,” said Douglas Meiklejohn, executive director of the New Mexico Environmental Law Center. “There are large areas of Native American rese …"

How watchdog journalism makes a difference

By Bill Buzenberg

Impact from 'Breathless and Burdened' a textbook example of the power of relentless reporting.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Denver":

"… t  two centuries. It has offices throughout Appalachia, as well as in Denver and Washington, D.C., and defends companies accused of polluting the envir …"

GOP opposition to Obamacare baffles Dr. Sullivan

By Wendell Potter

Commentary: former HHS Secretary Sullivan says Obamacare resembles plan crafted by Republicans.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Medicaid":

"… ce plan if they are not eligible for a government program like Medicare or Medicaid — is among the most vilified by today’s GOP. “If they were supporti …"

"… orgia, where Sullivan was born and still lives, have refused to expand the Medicaid program to bring more low-incomes individuals and families into coverage, …"

"… erage, as the Affordable Care Act makes possible. Deal has said expanding Medicaid “is something our state cannot afford,” even with the federal governme …"

"… urnalists Thursday that, in his view, Georgia can’t afford not to expand Medicaid. Not only would the expansion bring hundreds of thousands of Georgians int …"

A world awash in a nuclear explosive?

By Douglas Birch and R. Jeffrey Smith

Japan is leading a global move towards dangerous reactors fueled by a nuclear explosive, Thomas Cochran and other experts say.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Barack Obama":

"… ndon or Paris — could kill hundreds of thousands of people,” President Barack Obama told the United Nations Security Council in September 2009. “A …"

Issue ad or political ad? You be the judge

By Rachel Baye

Ads intended to influence elections often not reported because sponsors claim they are about issues.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Denver":

"… issue ads, said Ariana Dobson, who sells political ads for Comcast in the Denver-area. According to Zvonek, the organization didn’t have to file records …"

‘Nonpartisan’ gun rights group boosted by Democratic-aligned America Votes

By Adam Wollner and Michael Beckel

Nearly all of 'nonpartisan' Bull Moose Sportsmen's funding has come from a Democratic-aligned nonprofit.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Kay Hagan":

"… Sportsmen’s role in helping to craft new legislation introduced by Sen. Kay Hagan, D-N.C., known as the Sportsmen’s and Public Outdoor Recreation Traditio …"

A year after Newtown, searching for answers in the nation’s schools

By Nicholas Kusnetz

A year after Newtown, communities searching for answers.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Rick Perry":

"… was about school safety. Within weeks of the shooting at Sandy Hook, Gov. Rick Perry indicated his support for allowing more guns in schools. Lt. Gov. David De …"

As glitches fade, Obamacare approval will rise

By Wendell Potter

Commentary: as website improves, customers are finding insurance deals.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Medicaid":

"… while state officials checked to see if the applicants were eligible for Medicaid. Smith knew her income was too high to qualify for Medicaid, but she neve …"

"… eligible for Medicaid. Smith knew her income was too high to qualify for Medicaid, but she nevertheless had to fill out an extensive questionnaire and was p …"

"… active supporter of health care reform.   After she finally got the Medicaid denial she was expecting, Smith called Connect for Health Colorado — the …"

"… an employee to complete her application. “If people can get through the Medicaid process, I think they’ll be pleasantly surprised,” said Smith, who has …"

As experts recognize new form of black lung, coal industry follows familiar pattern of denial

By Chris Hamby

A newly recognized form of lung disease is emerging among miners — prompting the coal industry's latest pushback against benefit claims.

Excerpts from this story referencing "technician":

"… the Army, he received training in electronics and ended up stationed as a technician at a satellite communication site in New Jersey. He narrowly missed being …"

Center series digs into the 'epidemic' of deadly black lung disease

By Bill Buzenberg

Three-part series finds coal industry law firm playing role in denying benefits to dying miners.

Excerpts from this story referencing "energy":

"… rground and see the fruits of their labors enrich others and deliver cheap energy, who suck in dust and don’t complain as it blackens their lungs and chok …"

Coal industry's go-to law firm withheld evidence of black lung, at expense of sick miners

By Chris Hamby

In part 1 of a series, the Center details how a major law firm withheld evidence of black lung, helping defeat miners' claims for benefits.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Denver":

"… enefits. Jackson Kelly, with offices throughout Appalachia, as well as in Denver and Washington, D.C., defends companies accused of polluting the environme …"

Conference addresses alternatives to racial profiling, harsh school discipline

By Susan Ferriss

The Advancement Project, a civil rights initiative, holds conference in D.C. to address educators' frustrations as well as student concerns.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Denver":

"… nt? The Advancement Project’s website highlights changes in policies in Denver, Los Angeles and other locations. Ramiro Rubalcaba, an official from the L …"

D.C.-based groups spent big in special elections

By Dave Levinthal

Special interest super PACs and nonprofits from D.C. region poured millions into special elections.

Excerpts from this story referencing "New York":

"… of dollars in outside spending from political groups based in California, New York and Florida. Organizations in Illinois, meanwhile, spent precisely zero d …"

"… hat figure jumps to nearly 72 percent when factoring in organizations from New York City and the D.C. suburbs. Even homegrown groups usually outsource their …"

"… al interest that reach far behind district boundaries or state lines. The New York City-based 501(c)(4) nonprofit Action Fund, which advocates for fi …"

Yellen as Fed chair would be tougher on banks

By Alison Fitzgerald

Janet Yellen, President Obama’s intended nominee for Federal reserve chief, may prove to be tougher on banks.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Governor":

"… only defeat in a vote over his 18 years at the helm. The Fed’s Board of Governors was set to vote at a rare open meeting in 1995 to require banks to use a …"

"… e Federal Reserve System is made up of the Washington, D.C.-based Board of Governors and 12 Reserve Banks located across the country. The seven-member board i …"

"… e under the guidelines of supervision that are given to us by the Board of Governors,” she testified to the FCIC. “Could we have used our own discretion? …"

Target malfunctions imperil U.S. missile defense effort

By Richard H.P. Sia

The Pentagon is repeatedly taking risks by using old or untested missile parts, and paying hundreds of millions of dollars in extra costs.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Denver":

"… to difficulties the agency had overseeing a long-term contract awarded to Denver-based Lockheed Martin Space Systems in December 2003. The military had dec …"

California lawmakers latest to consider limits for cops in schools

By Susan Ferriss

Golden State lawmakers latest to think about limits.

Excerpts from this story referencing "law":

"… nts will drop out and get into more serious trouble. Since last December, lawmakers in various states and school administrators have rushed to fortify s …"

"… bill is set for May 1 before the Assembly Education Committee. California lawmakers are considering restricting other discipline practices critics say h …"

"… er existing strategies and model approaches to minimize the involvement of law enforcement in pupil conduct and minor offenses that do not rise to the le …"

"… uge shift in how we are talking about school safety,” said Zoe Rawson, a lawyer with the Labor/Community Strategy Center, a community group listed as a …"

Worker suffocations persist as grain storage soars, employers flout safety rules

By Jim Morris and Howard Berkes

The 2010 deaths of a 14-year-old boy and a 19-year-old man in an Illinois grain bin highlight unsafe practices, spotty enforcement.

Excerpts from this story referencing "biofuels":

"… in storage in the United States is surging, in part because of the boom in biofuels. Yet at worksites, farmers and commercial operators keep making the same m …"

Controversy over cops in schools flares anew

By Susan Ferriss

Push for more police post-Newtown runs up against concern about 'school-to-prison pipeline'

Excerpts from this story referencing "co-director":

"… publication Youth Today after the Newtown killings. Judith Browne Dianis, co-director of the Advancement Project, a national civil-rights group urging disciplin …"

I'll take embattled Obama administration nominees for $200, Alex

By Michael Beckel

Conservative group targets U.S. senators with anti-Hagel TV ads.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Washington, D.C.":

"… ervative nonprofit that spent $14,000 to air a single anti-Hagel ad in the Washington, D.C., media market on "Fox News Sunday." On Sunday, the New York Times further …"

School discipline reform groups question proposals for armed security

By Susan Ferriss

School reform groups question proposals emerging from shootings

Excerpts from this story referencing "leader":

"… Biden has met with a number of different groups this week in his role as leader of the post-Newtown effort —among them the National Rifle Association.Th …"

After big U.S. Supreme Court win, Montana nonprofit suffers string of losses

By Paul Abowd

Democrat Steve Bullock's gubernatorial win a low point for litigious conservative group.

Excerpts from this story referencing "attorney":

"… s. Bullock ran on his record of defending the state’s spending limits as attorney general, when he faced off with ATP in court.Bullock’s victory was not t …"

"… .”The law firms that establish these nonprofits, he says, “hide behind attorney-client privilege” to deflect questions about the political operations of …"

"… client has instructed me not to reveal that information,” said Hackstaff attorney Mario Nicolais, when the Center inquired about the nonprofit groups’ con …"

"… one of five positions on the state’s land board alongside the governor, attorney general, secretary of state and state auditor. The five-member board votes …"