Secretive groups spend millions to influence state elections

By Reity O'Brien

Nonprofits hit TV airwaves with attacks on state-level candidates, gaining traction since the U.S. Supreme Court 'Citizens United' decision.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Politics":

"… ondik, a political analyst at the University of Virginia's Center for Politics. “It’s preferred to have the outside group doing the really brutal st …"

Controversial Republican telemarketer forms super PAC

By Dave Levinthal

Gabriel S. Joseph III's past political efforts include an anti-Obama spam text message campaign that prompted legal complaints.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Federal Communications Commission":

"… e, the Human Rights Campaign, which supports gay rights, complained to the Federal Communications Commission that the unsolicited text messages were costing cell phone users money, si …"

Non-candidate spending increases in state elections

By Rachel Baye, Reity O'Brien, Kytja Weir and Ben Wieder

TV ad spending in state elections since 2010 is down, but the portion ponied up by political nonprofits and state-level super PACs rises.

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

"… provided by independent groups like those in Pennsylvania, according to a Center for Public Integrity analysis of data from media tracking service Kantar Media/CMAG. More than …"

"… t the record straight. But ultimately Cullen was outspent, and he told the Center for Public Integrity the group’s ads were a major factor in his 4-percentage-point loss. It …"

'Outside' groups swamp Florida's airwaves in race for governor

By Rachel Baye

Lax laws allow candidates to work so closely with outside groups, contribution limits become almost irrelevant.

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

"… date participation in any governor’s race in the country, according to a Center for Public Integrity analysis of data from media tracking service Kantar Media/CMAG. The pheno …"

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 …"

'Ready for Warren' to change name

By Dave Levinthal

Federal regulators convince a pro-Elizabeth Warren super PAC to change its name.

In New Hampshire, quixotic super PAC shaking up Republican primary

By Dave Levinthal

Big-spending Mayday PAC giving Jim Rubens an unexpected boost — and Scott Brown a headache — ahead of GOP primary.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Massachusetts":

"… to a little-known challenger.  Scott Brown, the former senator from Massachusetts who lost his seat in 2012, is expected to win the New Hampshire's GOP prim …"

"… n wildly different. It’s massive departure from 2012 re-election bid in Massachusetts, as then, Brown cast himself as a novel kind of campaign finance reformer. …"

FEC not 'Ready for Warren'

By Dave Levinthal

The nation's election regulator is telling an upstart super PAC to change its name, saying it violates federal law.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Scott Brown":

"… ext month. Warren won her U.S. Senate office in 2012, defeating then-Sen. Scott Brown, R-Mass., who's now attempting to win a U.S. Senate seat in New Hampshire. …"

How much money can a lobbyist make?

By Dave Levinthal and Marcelo Rochabrun

Hourly pay of four figures is possible at one D.C. firm, court filings show.

Lobbying disclosures leave public in the dark

By Marcelo Rochabrun and Dave Levinthal

Despite efforts to beef up laws regulating lobbyists, public is in the dark when it comes to what firms are up to in Washington.

Outsiders dominate Alaska's Senate race

By Michael Beckel

Washington, D.C.-based groups are dominating the airwaves in the Last Frontier, home to one of the nation's most contested Senate races.

Pat Roberts' merry band of boosters

By Dave Levinthal

Outside groups are using the power of positivity to help save career of Kansas' longtime U.S. senator.

Political nonprofits bungle IRS filings

By Michael Beckel

High-profile groups such as Crossroads GPS and Patriot Majority USA acknowledged mistakes after Center for Public Integrity inquiry.

Koch-backed seniors group low-balling election spending?

By Michael Beckel

The 60 Plus Association tells the IRS it barely spends money on politics — despite funding millions in candidate attack ads.

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 "American Medical Association":

"… uptick earlier this year, at least among lobbying powerhouses.  The American Medical Association ($3.9 million, down from $4.3 million during the second quarter of 2013), …"

Most senators wait to take e-filing leap

By Michael Beckel

Only a slice of the Senate has opted to e-file campaign finance documents as members debate mandating the practice.

Is this super PAC subverting disclosure rules?

By Michael Beckel

Georgia's GOP Senate primary has attracted big money from a super PAC funded by two nonprofit groups tied to an Ohio lobbyist.

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.

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.

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 "Hawaii":

"… cal action committees affiliated with ideological groups that also lobby. Hawaii’s Brian Schatz and Oregon’s Jeff Merkley both disclosed bundling activ …"

After Lindsey Graham met billionaire, supportive super PAC secured donation an hour later

By Marcelo Rochabrun

Sen. Lindsey Graham and a super PAC supporting him pitched a billionaire donor at same place an hour apart from one another other.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Massachusetts":

"… airman, donated $10,000, and Robert Kargman, a board member and owner of a Massachusetts real estate firm, gave $25,000, according to campaign finance records. Wh …"

Mississippi's super PAC-dominated Senate slugfest not over yet

By Dave Levinthal

Cochran and McDaniel prepare to square off again June 24 as outside groups spend millions in GOP's contested Senate primary.

'Radical animal rights movement' gets new foe

By Michael Beckel

An Iowa-based organization devoted to fighting 'the radical animal rights movement' has formed a super PAC.

Ready for Hillary no longer just a super PAC

By Dave Levinthal

Pro-Clinton super PAC has converted itself into a hybrid PAC, allowing it to also donate directly to political candidates.

Singularity University disavows super PACs

By Dave Levinthal

University disavows super PACs formed in its name by a school official.

Tech super PAC startups could tap billions

By Dave Levinthal

A for-profit university co-founded by noted futurist Ray Kurzweil is mulling whether to spend big on political campaigns.

Polis adds to campaign stash, bitcoin by bitcoin

By Dave Levinthal

Colorado Democrat Jared Polis is already benefiting from new campaign finance changes.

What the FEC's Bitcoin ruling means

By Dave Levinthal

But some questions still unanswered about how political committees may use the digital currency.

FEC sends senators erroneous warnings

By Dave Levinthal

Politicians received notices they violated election laws due to a communications mix-up.

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 "American Medical Association":

"… s in 2013," she added.) Those reporting more modest increases include the American Medical Association, Koch Industries, National Association of Broadcasters, defense contractor …"

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