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 …"

Eyeballs burn in North Carolina, Iowa ahead of U.S. Senate elections

By Michael Beckel

Last week, North Carolina, Iowa residents saw three political ads focused on contentious Senate elections every five minutes.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Federal Election Commission":

"… n pro-Tillis issue ads, according to filings in September submitted to the Federal Election Commission. It also aired a number of ads praising Tillis in August, but because the …"

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 "David Dewhurst":

"… n, eclipsing even the state’s own gubernatorial race. Incumbent Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst spent nearly half of that in the four-way race, with 70 percent more spots …"

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 "lobbyist":

"… rships and conferences for women. Women have also become the sellers, the lobbyists and the business owners. Entrepreneur Carrie Lightfoot founded The Well …"

"… sp; groups on both sides of the debate would covet,” she said. The only lobbyist for gun rights in the Texas Legislature is a woman named Alice Tripp. The …"

"… ars, Tripp said when she started lobbying in 1998, she was the only female lobbyist in the State Capitol. “I used to call … the legislators silverback go …"

Gun rights debate enters a new arena: the campus

By Wade Millward and Carmen Forman

The right to carry a firearm onto college campuses has become another issue in the gun control debate

Excerpts from this story referencing "National Rifle Association":

"… on campus, sometimes with the backing of larger gun rights groups like the National Rifle Association. For Sommer, 23, a computerized machining student who founded Idaho State …"

State lawmakers take aim at federal gun control

By Justine McDaniel, Robby Korth and Jessica Boehm

A growing collection of state legislatures seeks to disqualify federal gun control laws

Excerpts from this story referencing "mayor":

"… eave me alone to live my life’ attitude in the state,” said Jim Smith, mayor of Helena, the state capital. “There’s only a million of us here and t …"

Decades old gun control debate reshaped by new advocacy groups

The gun control movement has made significant gains in recent years, but the NRA remains king of the hill

Excerpts from this story referencing "Colorado":

"… 011, in which then-Rep. Gabrielle Giffords, D-Ariz., was shot; the Aurora, Colorado, movie theater shooting in 2012; and then, Newtown. The Sandy Hook shooti …"

"… Luke Wagner, a grassroots activist who is now the board president of the Colorado Second Amendment Association, said he works to develop ties with other gun …"

"… groups often help or launch their own legislative campaigns. Last year in Colorado, voters recalled some legislators who passed a package of gun control laws …"

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.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Georgia":

"… ese negative ads, which paint Roberts as an out-of-touch back bencher. The Georgia-based Tea Party Patriots Citizens Fund accounts for the rest of the a …"

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 "Texas":

"… per PAC — Cochran, and Reps. Mike Simpson, R-Idaho, and Pete Sessions, R-Texas, are favored politicos — and counts that money toward its lobbying outpu …"

U.S. Chamber targets Dems in state attorney general races

By Ben Wieder

Why are powerful business interests underwriting ads in AG races in the states?

Excerpts from this story referencing "Federal Election Commission":

"… ps to operate thanks to the U.S. Supreme Court’s 2010 Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission decision, which knocked aside bans that had existed in 24 states on politi …"

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 …"

Education groups battle teachers unions in state races

By Rachel Baye

Groups funded by billionaires back state-level candidates who want to weaken teachers unions and promote charter schools.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Colorado":

"… spent $935,000 on a school board race. That spending was countered by the Colorado chapter of Charles and David Koch’s Americans for Prosperity Foundation, …"

Shining a light on ALEC's power to shape policy

By Wendell Potter

Conservative group's power has been under-covered.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Walmart":

"… ocracy reported, the corporate co-chair of that task force at the time was Walmart, the country’s largest seller of rifles. Since then, more than two dozen …"

"… gal son” ALEC hopes to welcome back: that big retailer and rifle seller, Walmart. The loss of Walmart alone undoubtedly was a major contributor to the budg …"

"… to welcome back: that big retailer and rifle seller, Walmart. The loss of Walmart alone undoubtedly was a major contributor to the budget shortfall, conside …"

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 "Education":

"… aid. “There’s a darn good template out there now.” In June, the Education Department published a how-to guide for schools to create comprehensi …"

"… on in fiscal year 2009 but has not been funded for the past two years. The Education Department’s Safe and Drug-Free Schools and Communities program, which i …"

"… e see that our teachers are compensated,” said Ken Zarifis, president of Education Austin, the city’s main teachers union. “The first thing I heard out o …"

Police killing of boy, 13, with pellet gun spotlights foiled attempts to regulate replicas

By Susan Ferriss

Andy Lopez, 13, was shot dead by deputies in California who came upon him walking with a pellet gun shaped like an AK-47.

Excerpts from this story referencing "National Rifle Association":

"… r for Public Integrity reported on how pressure from retail stores and the National Rifle Association helped defeat a bill by Sen. Kevin de Leon, a Los Angeles Democrat, who ca …"

Lobbying dips overall, but the beat goes on for guns, drugs and agriculture

By Dave Levinthal

But third-quarter expenditures are down for many special interests.

Excerpts from this story referencing "House":

"… ving forward,” she said, “we will continue to work with members of the House, Senate and administration to achieve longer run solutions to our debt, de …"

Gun groups raising unprecedented cash in 2013

By Adam Wollner and Reity O'Brien

Advocates, opponents of firearms control gin up money machine as Congress debates legislation.

Excerpts from this story referencing "National Rifle Association":

"… did not top $70,000, according to the Center for Responsive Politics. The National Rifle Association has also had a big year, raising more than three times the money this year …"

Youth: Stand Your Ground laws put us at risk

By Susan Ferriss and Joy Crane

Youths in Florida and other states speak out against Stand Your Ground laws, racial profiling, following Zimmerman verdict.

Excerpts from this story referencing "National Rifle Association":

"… the Florida Department of Law Enforcement. The proposal was pushed by the National Rifle Association, which contributed heavily to Republican legislators running for office an …"

Pro-gun group dramatically ups influence spending

By Dave Levinthal

The nonprofit National Association for Gun Rights spent $3 million lobbying last quarter, far more than the better-known NRA.

Excerpts from this story referencing "National Rifle Association":

"… ly four times the second-quarter lobbying expenditures of the better-known National Rifle Association, which itself spent a near-record $840,000 during the year’s second quar …"

D.C.-based groups bombarded state high court races with ads

By Alan Suderman and Ben Wieder

Nearly $12 million spent by super PACs and nonprofits in 2012-13 state supreme court races.

Excerpts from this story referencing "National Rifle Association":

"… o weeks leading up to the election. Founded in 1991 with support from the National Rifle Association, which has long been a partial financial backer, the LEAA frequently pays …"

Gun lobby's money and power still holds sway over Congress

By Alan Berlow and Gordon Witkin

But lawmakers' fear may not be entirely justified.

Excerpts from this story referencing "West Virginia":

"… wo sponsors of the background check amendment — Joe Manchin, a West Virginia Democrat and Pat Toomey, a Pennsylvania Republican — illustrate some of …"

Gun groups, defense contractors buck downward trend in lobbying

By Dave Levinthal

Gun groups, defense contractors, oil companies and Facebook increased spending on lobbying last quarter.

Excerpts from this story referencing "National Rifle Association":

"… nal disclosures show. As debate over gun control raged in the Senate, the National Rifle Association, the National Shooting Sports Foundation and Mayors Against Illegal Guns e …"

"… increases. While not among the nation’s biggest lobbying spenders, the National Rifle Association spent $810,000 during the first three months of the year to lobby the fede …"

NRA spends record money on lobbying this year

By Dave Levinthal

Pro-gun organization increases influence effort as congressional debate rages.

Excerpts from this story referencing "National Rifle Association":

"… bsp;   …"

"… levels, new filings with the U.S. Senate indicate. The NRA and affiliated National Rifle Association of America Institute for Legislative Action together spent at least $800,0 …"

"… d to spend at least another $100,000 lobbying on behalf of the NRA or National Rifle Association of America Institute for Legislative Action from January through March. C …"

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 "National Rifle Association":

"… he only way to stop a bad guy with a gun is with a good guy with a gun,” National Rifle Association Executive Vice President Wayne LaPierre said after a young man shot his wa …"

EPA unaware of industry ties on cancer review panel

By David Heath and Ronnie Greene

An EPA panel appointed to study hexavalent chromium included scientists who had consulted for industry in lawsuits.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Environmental Protection Agency":

"… the $100,000 when his work was done. …"

Current gun debate may not help beleaguered ATF

By Alan Berlow

Federal gun cops handicapped by weak laws, stagnant budgets and Congressional restrictions.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Dianne Feinstein":

"… requirements of the NFA. The assault weapons ban recently proposed by Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif. includes no registration language. Background checks miss many b …"

Super Bowl ad cost Mayors Against Illegal Guns $100,000

By Michael Beckel

Michael Bloomberg's Mayors Against Illegal Guns drops $100K on ad during NFL's biggest game of the year, new records show.

Excerpts from this story referencing "National Rifle Association":

"… Beautiful," along with 1999 congressional testimony by Wayne LaPierre, the National Rifle Association's current executive vice president and CEO. "The NRA once supported backg …"

ATF's struggle to close down firearms dealers

By Fred Schulte

Agency's crippled oversight of the industry means troubled gun dealers can stay open for years.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Pennsylvania":

"… nical violations.” …"

"… nd stay on task.” He lost his license. Back in Biglerville Taylor, the Pennsylvania dealer, said he was struggling at age 60 with diabetes and simply “overw …"

Director of Mayors Against Illegal Guns: 'Money is not all that matters'

By Michael Beckel

Mayors Against Illegal Guns sees 'intensity' on its side as its pitted against the National Rifle Association.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Barack Obama":

"… Mayors Against Illegal Guns has spent $730,000 on lobbying since President Barack Obama took office in 2009. That total includes $200,000 spent in 2012 when Glaz …"

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