Bloomberg helps Democratic governors' group close gap on Republicans

By Ben Wieder

The Republican Governors Association is outpacing its Democratic counterpart but Democrats are catching up.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Democratic Governors Association":

"… ors Association raised about $68 million through the end of September, the Democratic Governors Association has been catching up with a record haul of more than $45 million, fueled b …"

"… lysis of preliminary data from media tracking firm Kantar Media/CMAG. The Democratic Governors Association has been the second-leading independent group, buying an estimated $12.3 m …"

"… ing advantage through the same period. The biggest individual donor to the Democratic Governors Association is Bloomberg, who gave $1.1 million in September. It appears to be the fir …"

"… mbent Republican governor. Meanwhile, aided by Bloomberg’s donation, the Democratic Governors Association has spent $7.2 million on ads mostly critical of Snyder. The governors’ …"

Ads in U.S. Senate contests turn nasty

By Dave Levinthal

More than seven in 10 U.S. Senate-focused television ads last week attacked or criticized a political candidate.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Pennsylvania":

"… ieson, director of the Annenberg Public Policy Center at the University of Pennsylvania who’s work focuses heavily on political communication. “Importantly, v …"

Secret politics pervade popular companies

By Dave Levinthal

Some well-known brands keep their political spending secret while others are more forthcoming, new survey shows.

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

"… received significant attention since 2010, when the Supreme Court’s Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission decision granted them powerful spending freedoms. Corporations may n …"

Oops: Republican super PAC misidentifies source of massive donation

By Michael Beckel

Super PAC acknowledges a $300,000 gift came from parents of GOP Senate candidate Dan Sullivan, not a wealth management firm.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Federal Election Commission":

"… ied its second-largest donor last month in paperwork filed Friday with the Federal Election Commission. The group, co-founded by GOP strategist Karl Rove, listed the Glenmede T …"

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 "Massachusetts":

"… heen will likely face former GOP Sen. Scott Brown, who briefly represented Massachusetts and has now gone north to the Granite State in a bid to reclaim his politi …"

Firearms more likely to be used in suicides than in homicides

By Carmen Forman and Jacob Byk

At least 50 people died per day from firearm suicide; 26 died from firearm homicides.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Massachusetts":

"… or 2012, the most recent year available, but Delaware, Illinois, Maryland, Massachusetts, Pennsylvania and Rhode Island denied requests for statistics or could not …"

Women become increasingly involved in gun groups

By Lauren Loftus and Natalie Krebs

Thanks in part to targeted marketing, more women are buying guns for protection and sport

Excerpts from this story referencing "Louisiana":

"… so a woman, Tara Mica-Reilly, the NRA state liaison for Texas, New Mexico, Louisiana and Mississippi. “I believe that women bring patience and logic and abi …"

Center for Public Integrity adds two new reporters to environment and labor team

The Center for Public Integrity’s Pulitzer Prize-winning environment and labor team is pleased to announce the hiring of two reporters.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Energy":

"… d natural gas and the Interior Department and authored the daily Afternoon Energy newsletter. Previously, Buford spent five years with The Providence …"

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 "Maryland":

"… eve Fetter, a nuclear physicist and associate provost at the University of Maryland who served in the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy duri …"

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 "Obama administration":

"… tegrity, was intended to address the huge amount of unfinished work in the Obama administration’s nonproliferation plan.It said that more than two tons of portable, eas …"

"… bama’s well-deserved reputation as an advocate for nuclear security, the Obama administration has been cutting nuclear security programs year after year for most of its …"

"… cans According to a study by the Center for Nonproliferation Studies, the Obama administration will spend at least $179 billion from 2010 through 2018 to maintain the Un …"

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 "White House":

"… g them: the tech and telecom industries, which have wrestled Congress, the White House and federal agencies on a variety of issues ranging from corporate mergers …"

Energy influence in North Dakota is expanding — so what?

By Nicholas Kusnetz and Jared Bennett

A Q & A with reporter Nicholas Kusnetz about the oil and gas industries growing influence in North Dakota.

How oil and gas firms gained influence and transformed North Dakota

By Nicholas Kusnetz

Industry has transformed the state, but at what cost?

Excerpts from this story referencing "ConocoPhillips":

"… l regulatory matters. In 2011, for example, Dalrymple received $1,000 from ConocoPhillips as the commission was considering an application by the company to pool se …"

"… companies with applications before the Industrial Commission but said the ConocoPhillips approval helped protect a state park. A review of any of the major regula …"

Montana state senators raise big bucks with secretive nonprofit

By Michael Beckel

Secretive group connected to GOP state Sens. Jason Priest and Ed Walker raised $900,000 in 2012, new documents show.

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

"… ly suing Montana to force the state to abide by the U.S. Supreme Court’s Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission ruling, which allowed corporations, unions and special interest groups to …"

Energy Dept. confirms it's been on the wrong path since 2007

By Douglas Birch

A newly-released DOE study concludes the department can save billions by shelving a costly South Carolina nuclear fuel factory.

Excerpts from this story referencing "White House":

"… ium and uranium called MOX — the plant is supposed to produce. The White House put the project, located at the Energy Department’s former weapons pluto …"

Federal judges plead guilty

By Reity O'Brien, Kytja Weir and Chris Young

Judges acknowledge conflicts of interest Center found in 26 cases.

Excerpts from this story referencing "bank":

"… ds’? To save his home, Mountaga Bah needed to win a legal battle with a banking giant. Faced with the threat of foreclosure, Bah and his wife sued Wel …"

"… ah and his wife sued Wells Fargo bank beginning in 2008, claiming that the bank engaged in predatory lending when it added a second mortgage to the Bowie, …"

"… be able to afford the monthly mortgage payments. The complaint alleged the bank’s lax underwriting meant it lacked “clean hands.” In 2010, a three- …"

"… 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals Judge Barbara Keenan owned stock in the bank.  “I couldn’t believe it,” Bah told the Center after he learne …"

Chemical industry among big spenders on lobbying this quarter

By Dave Levinthal

New numbers indicate it's still good to be a lobbyist in America.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Energy":

"… irm Amgen, Shell Oil, Prudential Financial, JPMorgan Chase & Co., Duke Energy, American Fuel and Petrochemical Manufacturers, 3M Co. and the Securities …"

Report offers grim predictions for South Texas air quality amid Eagle Ford oil boom

By Jim Morris, Lisa Song and David Hasemyer

State-funded study projects dramatic increase in emissions from oil and gas development by 2018.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Texas Commission on Environmental Quality":

"… amo Area Council of Governments (AACOG) in San Antonio and paid for by the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ). The study was designed to determine the extent to which oil and ga …"

GAO report again finds black lung proposal supported by science

By Chris Hamby

A new government study supports reducing the dust limit workers encounter in mines; the industry is pushing back against stronger rules.

States target toxic chemicals as Washington fails to act

By Ronnie Greene

In state capitols from Maine to Oregon, environmental advocates are filing bills to identify and ban noxious chemicals.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Energy":

"… publican State Sen. Doug Ericksen, chair of the Washington legislature’s Energy, Environment & Telecommunications Committee, said the bill as proposed …"

Tough new fracking rules in Colorado drawing keen attention in Texas, where boom rages on

By Zahra Hirji, Lisa Song and Jim Morris

Air pollution rules adopted last month in Colorado may have an impact on oil and gas drilling in Texas.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Energy":

"… f them — Anadarko Petroleum Corp., DCP Midstream, Encana Corp. and Noble Energy, Inc. — fully support the new regulations. Anadarko and DCP Midstream a …"

Plutonium fever blossoms in Japan

Cronyism, influence-buying and a stifling of dissenting voices have kept the Japanese nuclear industry going strong after Fukushima.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Taro Kono":

"… worked as an investigative journalist in Tokyo since 1993. …"

"… fluential figure who is less outspoken but also has an independent streak. Taro Kono himself, who sometimes campaigns in colorful suspenders, is popular within …"

"… at all spent nuclear fuel be sent to Rokkasho or similar Japanese plants. Taro Kono, the industry critic, charged that Kano “acted like the secretary genera …"

"… res, or statelets, in per capita income. “You can’t grow much,” says Taro Kono, the anti-nuclear activist lawmaker, who said he understands the plant’s …"

Japan could be building an irresistible terrorist target, experts say

Japan has balked at U.S. security advice for its nuclear plants.

Excerpts from this story referencing "simulation":

"… eadily reach the Japanese coastline. But there was no “force-on-force” simulation like those routinely included in U.S. exercises. The diplomat concluded Mi …"

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 "radiation":

"… have to be placed on top of a container, he says, to register the kind of radiation given off by uranium. Plutonium is more difficult to shield, but it could …"

"… utonium out of Russia, Cochran produced his Coke can and waved a hand-held radiation detector over it to prove it was radioactive. Six years later, after the …"

Nuclear Waste: Auditors find continuing mismanagement at nuclear fuel plant

By Douglas Birch

The GAO complains anew about DOE's unwillingness to investigate cost increases at the MOX plant, and learn from its mistakes there

Excerpts from this story referencing "MOX fuel":

"… SA officials decided last April to slow construction of the Mixed Oxide or MOX fuel plant, which is located at DOE’s Savannah River Site, pending a review o …"

As drilling ravages Texas’ Eagle Ford Shale, residents 'living in a Petri dish’

By Jim Morris, Lisa Song and David Hasemyer

In partnership with InsideClimate News and The Weather Channel, Center examines oil industry exploitation of Texas’ Eagle Ford Shale.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Petroleum":

"… n Depth, a research, education and public-relations arm of the Independent Petroleum Association of America. A former aide to Newt Gingrich, he’s a polished, …"

Saturated with oil money, Texas legislature saved industry from pollution rule

By David Hasemyer, Ben Wieder and Alan Suderman

An effort to impose stricter rules on Texas oil and gas operators in 2011 fizzled after the state legislature got involved.

Excerpts from this story referencing "ConocoPhillips":

"… osition materialized quickly. The Texas Oil and Gas Association, Marathon, ConocoPhillips, Shell Oil, Chevron and other industry giants lined up to tell Texas legis …"

Nuclear Waste: Cost of South Carolina fuel plant goes up by billions of dollars — again

By R. Jeffrey Smith and Douglas Birch

The MOX plant may cost another $30 billion to complete and operate, and federal officials are newly wary.

Excerpts from this story referencing "MOX fuel":

"… hat the Energy Department would have to pay the operators a fee to use the MOX fuel, officials said. Due to cost overruns and funding shortages, the White Ho …"

Democrats easily outpace Republicans in super PAC fundraising race

By Michael Beckel

Democrats are fully embracing the independent political money groups they once derided in an effort to retain the Senate this year.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Contran Corp.":

"… top giver to the Congressional Leadership Fund, at $200,000. His company, Contran Corp., ranked as the No. 1 donor to American Crossroads last year, having contri …"

Pro-Vitter super PAC fueled by energy interests

By Julie Patel and Erin Quinn

A super PAC backing Sen. David Vitter's run for governor got most of its money last year from energy interests, new documents show.

Excerpts from this story referencing "ExxonMobil":

"… n Petroleum, Northern Tier Energy and affiliates of BP, Chevron, Shell and ExxonMobil — and $30,000 from Valero Energy's political action committee. Many of …"

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