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 "Rick Snyder":

"… the Independence USA PAC has spent more than $750,000 on TV ads supporting Rick Snyder, Michigan’s incumbent Republican governor. Meanwhile, aided by Bloo …"

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.

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 "Politics":

"… r against federal-level candidates, according to the Center for Responsive Politics.  Topping the list is the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, one of the natio …"

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 "Crossroads":

"… o-founder Bernard Marcus, who gave $500,000. …"

"… ompany as giving it $300,000 on Aug. 29, part of the $1.7 million American Crossroads raised in August. But Glenmede spokeswoman Melissa Stonberg says the weal …"

"… r wealthy individuals, families and foundations — didn’t give American Crossroads a penny. "The Glenmede Trust Company, N.A. did not make any donations to …"

"… "The Glenmede Trust Company, N.A. did not make any donations to American Crossroads," Stonberg told the Center for Public Integrity. "We have contacted Americ …"

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 "West Virginia":

"… an and Montana. Thanks to retirements of Democratic lawmakers in Montana, West Virginia and South Dakota, the GOP looks poised to pick up at least three seats. M …"

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 "National Rifle Association":

"… the firearms available, Berman said. “The problem of course is the NRA (National Rifle Association) and their interpretation that any attempt even to talk about safe storage …"

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 "president":

"… benefiting from the surge in female customers, including Gordon Bond, the president of Bond Arms in Granbury, Texas, which manufacturers double-barr …"

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 "Charles Lewis":

"… ” “Toxic Clout” and “Hard Labor.” Founded in 1989 by journalist Charles Lewis, the Center for Public Integrity is one of the country's oldest …"

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 "Energy":

"… month -- on July 8, a day after the Center for Public Integrity asked the Energy department’s National Nuclear Security Administration, which runs the na …"

"… y product — to intellectual independence in their workforce. Top lab and Energy Department officials have responded to the case by urging that all writing …"

"… official who could discuss the case. Derrick Robinson, a spokesman for the Energy department’s National Nuclear Security Administration, which oversees Lo …"

"… nondisclosure agreement pertaining to information it deems classified. An Energy department Office of Hearings and Appeals decision last month, w …"

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 "Bush administration":

"… trator for the NNSA’s Defense Nuclear Nonproliferation office during the Bush administration; and Harvard researcher Nickolas Roth, in their own, 32-page report.& …"

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 "General Dynamics":

"… ctors United Technologies, Northrop Grumman, Lockheed Martin, Raytheon and General Dynamics cutting lobbying spending. Many large oil and energy production interests …"

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 "Energy":

"… s hard to find a place or person that hasn’t been touched by the boom. Energy companies have drilled more than 8,000 wells into western North Dakota’s …"

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 "federal government":

"… lliams’ review. South Carolina has filed a lawsuit seeking to force the federal government to complete the MOX fuel plant, where about 1,600 workers are currently em …"

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 "Bush administration":

"… s prior job where he signed the so-called “torture memos” for the Bush administration’s Justice Department. The memos justified the controversial interrogatio …"

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 "ExxonMobil":

"… rests and defense contractors, such as Northrop Grumman, General Electric, ExxonMobil, Chevron Corp., Edison Electric Institute, BP and American Electrical Powe …"

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 "Energy":

"… ly beholden to the industry.” Omar Garcia, president of the South Texas Energy & Economic Roundtable, said Friday morning that he did not have the ti …"

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.

Excerpts from this story referencing "National Institute":

"… use of monitors that provide continuous information about dust levels. The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, a government research agency known as …"

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 "Vermont":

"… ided to go ahead on our own, because we cannot wait for TSCA reform.” …"

"… eople are losing patience,” said Justin Johnson, deputy secretary of the Vermont Agency for Natural Resources. As the Center for Public Integrity reported …"

"… donations, has helped beat back hundreds of state bills in recent years. Vermont’s Johnson is among the state officials who understand the argument that …"

"… act has grown stale. “I’ve been personally to the statehouse here in Vermont for five years in a row. ‘Let’s wait and see what the feds do,’” s …"

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 "radiation":

"… d employment and income,” he said. “Some researchers say that low-dose radiation is good for your health. It’s a persuasive argument.” Kano separately …"

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 "radiation":

"… aterials are kept, unarmed guards issue badges and direct visitors through radiation sensors. If the guards and the police are outmanned or outgunned, plant of …"

"… lass. When production is in full swing, ships carry huge cylinder-shaped, radiation-shielded shipping containers or “casks” to Rokkasho’s seaport. From …"

"… he spent fuel is kept immersed until it is processed, to blunt its intense radiation, which for the first 100 years can kill outright about half of adults fool …"

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 "Natural Resources Defense Council":

"… Finn; he’s now a consultant to his longtime employer, the nonprofit Natural Resources Defense Council, but shows no sign of slowing down. Richard Garwin, another famously impo …"

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 "Energy":

"… fuel. The NNSA did not immediately respond to a request for comment. …"

"… llions more than first estimated, due to what the GAO last year called the Energy agency’s “record of inadequate management and oversight.” The GAO r …"

"… of inadequate management and oversight.” The GAO report found that the Energy department’s April 2013 draft estimate of the total cost of the plutoniu …"

"… ignored key steps in calculating the figure.   A recently-completed Energy Department study of the plutonium plant and alternatives, not yet released …"

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 "Wyoming":

"… nt — whether in Texas’ Eagle Ford, Pennsylvania’s Marcellus Shale or Wyoming’s Green River Basin — tend to report the same symptoms: nausea, nosebl …"

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 "oil":

"… Texas — In January 2011, with air quality worsening in Texas’ booming oil and gas fields and the federal government beginning to take notice, state …"

"… applied in the Eagle Ford Shale region of South Texas, the fastest-growing oil shale play in the nation and maybe the world. Since then, more than 2,400 …"

"… thed by 1.1 million people. The Texas legislature’s rush to protect the oil and gas industry reflects a culture in which politics and business are alm …"

"… m Craddick, who championed the House version of SB1134, owns stock in nine oil companies, five of which are active in the Eagle Ford. At the end of 2013, …"

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 "Harvard":

"… icial said. The department’s study was conducted by John MacWilliams, a Harvard-trained lawyer and partner at a Boston-area private investment fund. He al …"

"… ording to the department’s latest public estimate. Matthew Bunn, now at Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government, was a White House official during the Cl …"

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 "Mississippi":

"… y conservative. Republicans vs. Republicans The potential targets include Mississippi’s Sen. Thad Cochran, Sen. Lindsey Graham of South Carolina and Senate Mi …"

"… Club for Growth’s super PAC has spent more than $200,000 on ads backing Mississippi state Sen. Chris McDaniel, who is challenging Cochran. And the Senate Cons …"

"… School in Los Angeles. That phenomenon is already unfolding in Kentucky, Mississippi and South Carolina — and a host of other states from Alaska to North Car …"

"… eing. And in mid-January, Cochran’s backers launched a super PAC called Mississippi Conservatives. That group has not yet disclosed any of its funders, but it …"

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 "Louisiana":

"… . David Vitter, who announced last week he’ll be running for governor of Louisiana in 2015, joins the race with powerful energy interests at his side. A sup …"

"… erests at his side. A super PAC that supports his candidacy, the Fund for Louisiana's Future, raised $1.5 million last year, according to a new Federal Electi …"

"… y of the contributions were tied to offshore drilling — which helps fuel Louisiana’s economy but has also been antagonistic to other key industries such as …"

"… tourism. The PAC hunted for cash — and alligators — last year at its Louisiana Bayou Weekend fundraiser, which featured Vitter as a guest. Vitter and the …"

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