Romney's top fundraisers consider bailing

By Carrie Levine

As the GOP's 2012 presidential nominee considers another bid, Jeb Bush and other 2016 hopefuls try to poach top fundraisers.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Texas":

"… Yankees, supported Romney is 2012 but is currently uncommitted. Texas developer Harlan Crow, a major donor in 2012 to Restore Our Futu …"

"… yone out’ Gaylord T. Hughey Jr., a prominent campaign cash bundler from Texas, said he has heard from and met with “several” potential presidential …"

"… ,000 for Romney’s 2012 campaign. He also raised money for Texas Gov. Rick Perry, another possible 2016 presidential candidate, when Perry …"

"… 2004 campaign. Hughey has also contributed to Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas, who is also reportedly eyeing a presidential run. Asked about the number …"

Guess who's behind 2015's first super PAC?

By Michael Beckel

Curiously, it’s not the anticipated group backing a Jeb Bush presidential run.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Federal Election Commission":

"… A super PAC called “We the People, Not Washington” registered with the Federal Election Commission on Monday, according to new documents released by the agency. Its treasur …"

Groups sue to force EPA's hand on oil and gas emissions

By Jamie Smith Hopkins

Nine groups sue to force the EPA to decide whether emissions from oil and gas extraction should be publicly reported.

Excerpts from this story referencing "energy":

"… decades, said Abigail Dillen, vice president of litigation for climate and energy there. Citizen lawsuits can play an important watchdog role, holding the …"

Advisory panel tells Congress the nuclear weapons complex is too big and too old

By Douglas Birch

A congressional advisory panel says the nuclear weapons complex can be scaled down and modernized with less regulation.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Inspector General":

"… ing Sandia — after leaving office in 2009. A 2013 report by the DOE’s Inspector General said the four labs couldn’t document what she did for them. But accordin …"

Analysis shows widespread discrepancies in staffing levels reported by nursing homes

By Jeff Kelly Lowenstein

Analysis shows staffing levels lower than what's reported on public website.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Illinois":

"… In 2012 more than 700 facilities, including more than 250 nursing homes in Illinois, had daily care levels that were lower than the levels required by the sta …"

GOP rides cavalry to U.S. Senate majority

By Michael Beckel, Dave Levinthal and Carrie Levine

Super PACs, 'dark money' nonprofits help make Election Day difference as Republicans seize a U.S. Senate majority

Excerpts from this story referencing "lobbyist":

"… unexpectedly close race with Republican challenger Ed Gillespie, a former lobbyist and ex-chairman of the Republican National Committee. The Virginia contes …"

Megabanks have prison financial services market locked up

By Daniel Wagner

Bank of America and JP Morgan Chase & Co. avoid competitive bidding process in contracts serving federal prisoners.

Excerpts from this story referencing "JPMorgan Chase":

"… nders. On Wall Street, Bank of America plays a perpetual second fiddle to JPMorgan Chase & Co., the only U.S. bank that holds more assets. A few blocks north, …"

Politicos souring on FEC advice?

By Dave Levinthal

Requests for election law rulings plummet as ideological gridlock envelops commission.

Excerpts from this story referencing "conservative attorney":

"… said.  Late last year, the FEC's three Democratic appointees blocked conservative attorney Dan Backer from obtaining a favorable ruling for a client, the Tea Party L …"

Hobbled IRS can't stem 'dark money' flow

By Julie Patel

Budget and staffing cuts, endless congressional investigations keep IRS from investigating activities of political nonprofits.

Excerpts from this story referencing "White House":

"… mplement the tax code in a manner that is effective and fair​." The White House did not respond to requests for comment. Meanwhile, others worry Congress …"

Class-action suit: Wrong to put kids into immigration court with no lawyers to help

By Susan Ferriss

Kids whose dad was killed by gangsters are among the plaintiffs in a suit arguing that children should have lawyers in immigration court.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Seattle":

"… e-process rights and immigration law. The plaintiffs in the suit filed in Seattle are eight children aged 10 to 17 who have resided in the United States for …"

"… in the near future.   Two of the minors, 13-year-old and 15-year-old Seattle siblings, saw their father gunned down by gangsters who objected to the fa …"

"… aw firm in Washington, D.C.; and the Northwest Immigrant Rights Project in Seattle. In response to the suit, Andrew S. Muñoz, public affairs officer for th …"

"… ldren are going to qualify for refuge in the United States. Bob Ekblad, a Seattle area pastor, is a friend of the family of three children—aged 10, 13 and …"

Saving the penny makes cents for zinc-backed front group

By Erin Quinn

'Broad-based' group created to save the penny from extinction turns out to be backed by a company that supplies metal to make the coins.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Congress":

"… rs will face higher costs, fewer benefits and a loss of provider choice if Congress and the Obama administration don't take action to keep planned rate cuts f …"

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 "Scott Walker":

"… with coordination laws.” …"

Happy birthday, super PAC!

By Marcelo Rochabrun

Name for 'independent expenditure-only committee' turns 4 years old, but still not fully integrated into common language.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Bush":

"… arl Rove, the Seattle Post-Intelligencer wrote: “Karl Rove: ‘Bush’s brain’ helped organize the super-PAC Crossroads GPS, a ‘nonprofit …"

CPI-ABC black lung series wins Loeb award

A CPI-ABC News investigation of the flawed federal benefits system for miners with black lung on Tuesday won a Gerald Loeb award.

Excerpts from this story referencing "New York":

"… d,” was honored in the investigative reporting category at a ceremony in New York on Tuesday evening. Named on the award were Chris Hamby and Ronnie Greene, …"

"… ther news organizations honored include the Tampa Bay Times, the New York Times, the Huffington Post and Bloomberg. Congratulations to al …"

25 years, countless investigations and 935 lies

By Charles Lewis

Founder Chuck Lewis tells how the Center for Public Integrity came to be in this excerpt from his new book.

FEC struggles to appoint top lawyer

By Dave Levinthal

Agency that enforces campaign laws has gone without a general counsel for nearly a year — and counting.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Center for Public Integrity":

"… liberative process," FEC chairman Lee Goodman, a Republican, told the Center for Public Integrity. "The selection of a general counsel is an important decision and we want …"

Labor Department unveils rule to protect coal miners following Center investigation

By Chris Hamby

Move is a direct response to disclosures that lawyers kept key evidence from sick miners, which caused some to lose benefits cases.

Ex-FEC leader starts New Hampshire super PAC

By Michael Beckel

Former FEC Chairman David Mason establishes 'New Hampshire PAC to Save America'.

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 "Ivy League":

"… y 65 or older. Roughly one in five federal appellate judges graduated from Ivy League law schools, according to the Center’s analysis of Federal Judicial Cent …"

How watchdog journalism makes a difference

By Bill Buzenberg

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

Lawyer selected for Czech ambassadorship also major Obama fundraiser

By Michael Beckel

Attorney Andrew Schapiro has become the latest of the president's campaign bundlers tapped for a top diplomatic post.

Excerpts from this story referencing "White House":

"… the president, to be the next U.S. ambassador to the Czech Republic. The White House's announcement Thursday night follows repeated admonishments of Obama for …"

"… other Harvard Law School classmate of Obama's who previously served in the White House as the ethics czar.     …"

Transfers allow nonprofits to spend more money on campaigns, experts say

By Julie Patel

Groups move money to maximize amount that can be used to advocate for or against candidates.

Excerpts from this story referencing "San Francisco":

"… other to raise money for political campaigning,” Colvin, a principal at San Francisco-based law firm Adler & Colvin, told the Center for Public Integrity. …"

Nonprofits spend money on campaigns despite benefactors' warnings

By Julie Patel

Despite warning, four nonprofits spent money on 2012 elections.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Politics":

"… ake and Heller’s runs for Senate, according to the Center for Responsive Politics. Flake won by a margin of about three percentage points, while Heller won …"

"… nding in the 2012 federal election, according to the Center for Responsive Politics. That included about $20 million in spending aimed to oust President Barac …"

"… ormer U.S. Surgeon General Carmona, according to the Center for Responsive Politics and American Commitment news releases. Phil Kerpen, president of American …"

"… oots Policy Strategies as previously reported by the Center for Responsive Politics. The two grants comprised most of Americans for Tax Reform’s overall re …"

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 "National Institute":

"… 0,000 to Craddick’s campaigns, according to an analysis of data from the National Institute on Money in State Politics. The industry has also invested more than $600 …"

Billionaires use super PACs to advance pet causes

By Michael Beckel

Wealthy donors who bankrolled their own issue-focused super PACs dominated the 2013 fundraising game.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Ed Gillespie":

"… rossroads, the pro-Republican behemoth co-founded in 2010 by Karl Rove and Ed Gillespie. Next came candidate-specific super PACs, like those that last year aided …"

Federal appeals court sides with law firm in black lung case, but finds actions 'hardly admirable'

By Chris Hamby

Coal law firm's withholding of evidence not "fraud on the court," appeals court rules, shifting long-standing battle to West Virginia.

Highlights of Offshore Leaks so far

By Kimberley Porteous and Emily Menkes

Highlights of ICIJ's offshore leaks investigation.

Rising caseload, fewer Labor Department judges triggers painful mix for suffering laborers

By Jim Morris

A federal worker compensation program once viewed as a model now suffers rising caseloads — but fewer judges, triggering frustration.

Excerpts from this story referencing "food":

"… sed,” Bouhout said. “Sometimes he said he couldn’t find money to buy food.” Bouhout returned to Afghanistan in December 2011. Two months later, R …"

How Washington starves its election watchdog

By Dave Levinthal

Agency hamstrung by political bickering, case backlogs, staff departures — even Chinese hackers.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Senate":

"… only two commissioners remained on the job as McConnell demanded that the Senate vote on pending nominees as a package, not individually as Democrats wante …"

"… t of a presidential election, the parties reached an uneasy pact. The U.S. Senate in mid-2008 then confirmed as commissioners Republican Don McGahn — a ki …"

"… s and committees involved in two special elections — New Jersey’s U.S. Senate race and Massachusetts’ 5th District congressional contest — to file d …"

"… — actually agreed this year. The asks include passing a law that makes Senate candidates file campaign reports electronically, not on paper — at an es …"

Days after investigation, coal miners' safety net scrutinized

By Bill Buzenberg

Center's 'Breathless and Burdened' series leads U.S. senators to call for changes, major hospital to halt program and review practices.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Coal":

"… thing miners and their families in the Coal fields have known for decades. Coal companies, their lawyers and their hand-picked doctors will go to any leng …"