Coal ash no worse than everyday trash, EPA rules

By Kristen Lombardi, Jamie Smith Hopkins and Talia Buford

The EPA announced what it called a "milestone" rule for toxic coal ash, but critics says it doesn't go far enough.

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

"… streams, rivers and lakes or tainted the air. In a series of stories, the Center for Public Integrity highlighted the environmental and human health consequences of coal ash. …"

Charities risked tax-exempt status with political ads

By Rachel Baye

The IRS bans charities from participating in elections, but some groups pushed the envelope in 2014.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Politics":

"… organization could face a fine or lose its tax-exempt status as a charity. Politics ‘absolutely prohibited’ The IRS says 501(c)(3) groups are …"

Election ads were about issues, says 'Carolina Rising' chief

By Carrie Levine

'Dark money' nonprofit spends millions backing candidate but says ads are about issues.

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

"… arolina Rising ran more TV ads than either Tillis or Hagan, according to a Center for Public Integrity analysis of data provided by Kantar Media/CMAG, an ad tracking firm. Inte …"

"… ection,” Dallas Woodhouse, the group’s president and founder, told the Center for Public Integrity. “Those are issue ads. Those are not political ads." Woodhouse, a forme …"

Governors and oil industry work hand in hand in offshore drilling group

By Nicholas Kusnetz

Lobbying firm, advocacy organization did much of the work.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Politics":

"… $1.4 million over the past decade, according to the Center for Responsive Politics and the National Institute on Money in State Politics. Jindal’s office …"

"… enter for Responsive Politics and the National Institute on Money in State Politics. Jindal’s office did not respond to an interview request or to question …"

Koch-linked organization uses ‘dark money’ to fight political disclosure

By Michael Beckel

Most of the $13 million raised by American Commitment has come three Koch-backed groups.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Sean Noble":

"… o Protect Patient Rights — headed by Koch-connected political consultant Sean Noble — contributed about $4.8 million to American Commitment in 2012. And an …"

Hate political ads? Skip morning shows

By Dave Levinthal

'Today,' 'Good Morning America' were top draws for U.S. Senate message machines ahead of the 2014 midterms.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee":

"… t above buying ads on the network, Kantar Media/CMAG data shows. Take the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee, which during September and October blasted out fundraising appeals to sup …"

Koch-backed nonprofit raised $44 million in 2013

By Michael Beckel

ObamaCare-bashing Americans for Prosperity, a nonprofit backed by the billionaire Koch brothers, raised $44 million in 2013.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Barack Obama":

"… e U.S. tax code. It has emerged as one of the leading critics of President Barack Obama and his policies — particularly his “ObamaCare” health care reform l …"

Gillespie's rich friends leave him hanging

By Carrie Levine

Consummate GOP insider Ed Gillespie nearly wins Virginia Senate seat, no thanks to his deep-pocketed friends.

Excerpts from this story referencing "lobbyist":

"… rossroads co-founder, former Republican National Committee chairman and ex-lobbyist would have trouble attracting big money. Conventional wisdom was off on b …"

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 "North Carolina":

"… successful strategy of linking Democratic candidates — from Colorado to North Carolina — to an increasingly unpopular President Barack Obama and his policies. …"

"… least one of every five ads in six of the hottest Senate races: Arkansas, North Carolina, Colorado, Kentucky, Louisiana and Michigan. According to a Center for Pu …"

"… mmittees also reported spending an additional $14 million.) Similarly, in North Carolina, incumbent Democratic Sen. Kay Hagan and state House Speaker Thom Tillis, …"

"… st, yet Hagan still lost to Tillis on Tuesday night. In the final days of North Carolina’s race, which will likely go down as the most expensive Senate contest i …"

The meanest U.S. Senate races of all

By Chris Kirk and Dave Levinthal

Many of the nation's most competitive U.S. races featured the most negative political advertising.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Thom Tillis":

"… linging. In North Carolina, where the U.S. Sen. Kay Hagan, a Democrat, and Thom Tillis, a Republican, have been locked in a dead heat, nearly seven out of 10 ads …"

Surprise! No. 1 super PAC backs Democrats

By Carrie Levine and Dave Levinthal

To the surprise of many, the top-spending super PAC this election backs Democrats, not Republicans.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Barack Obama":

"… nate Majority PAC fundraiser in July that featured a dinner with President Barack Obama.   Another LLC contributor is listed as Elmendorf Strategies LL …"

Election 2014 by the numbers

By Michael Beckel

A new Center for Public Integrity money-in-politics index highlights key facts about the most expensive midterm in history.

Excerpts from this story referencing "California":

"… d amount spent on TV ads related to statewide ballot measures in California: $75 million Estimated time it would take to watch every TV ad for all st …"

U.S. Senate races to attract 1 million TV ads

By Michael Beckel and Dave Levinthal

Super PACs, nonprofits help fuel relentlessly negative messaging in U.S. Senate races.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Thom Tillis":

"… . North Carolina’s race between incumbent Democratic Sen. Kay Hagan and Thom Tillis, her Republican rival, drew more ads last week than any other contest — …"

Power shifts to outsiders in U.S. Senate fight

By Michael Beckel

Battle for control determined in large part by big-spending super PACs and nonprofits.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Georgia":

"… enate-focused TV ads that have so far aired in Alaska, Arkansas, Colorado, Georgia, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Michigan, North Carolina, New Hampshir …"

North Carolina's state of political hate

By Dave Levinthal

North Carolina's U.S. Senate race is the nation's nastiest — and few are particularly friendly affairs.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Senate":

"… lic Integrity is tracking political advertising in races for the U.S. Senate and state-level offices. Use these two, interactive features — …"

"… tate of political hate. Tar Heels last week endured more than 10,800 U.S. Senate election-focused TV ads that featured at least some content that tarred an …"

"… eliminary data from Kantar Media/CMAG, an ad tracking firm. No other U.S. Senate race — even the bitter contests in Kentucky, Iowa and Georgia — has ex …"

"… al Defense Action Fund (609). Just two-dozen of the more than 10,800 Senate race-focused TV ads that ran last week in North Carolina had a positive to …"

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 "Thom Tillis":

"… Carolina’s Senate race, where Democratic Sen. Kay Hagan faces Republican Thom Tillis, wasn’t much more positive than the New Hampshire race: 10 percent of ad …"

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 "Clarence Thomas":

"… ,” Mayer said, referencing the view articulated by Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas in the 2010 Citizens United case. “If you don’t have to disclose, ther …"

Democrats seize air supremacy in Senate battlegrounds

By Dave Levinthal and Michael Beckel

Liberals aired more TV ads last week than their conservative foils in seven of the nine top Senate battlegrounds races.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Minority Leader":

"… number of ads as Pryor’s campaign aired. Meanwhile, in Kentucky, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell battled Democratic challenger Alison Lundergan Grimes. The …"

Obama takes star turn in state political ads

By Ben Wieder

President and his policies take center stage in political ads, with more than 300,000 mentions, including in lower level state races.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Maryland":

"… ive, with nine out of every 10 ads supportive of the president. In one ad, Maryland Lt. Gov. Anthony Brown, the Democratic gubernatorial nominee, touted …"

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 …"

Senate Democrats lead TV ad blitz

By Michael Beckel

The Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee aired more TV ads in key Senate races last week than any other group.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Federal Election Commission":

"… oup co-founded by Rove after the U.S. Supreme Court’s Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission decision in 2010. Both American Crossroads and the DSCC aired about 1,000 …"

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 "Arkansas":

"… dent groups dominated the races in those states and also in an election in Arkansas as they tried to sway voters in those nonpartisan elections. The independ …"

"… tside group fought off attacks from two other outside groups. But in Arkansas, spending by the Law Enforcement Alliance of America had a parti …"

"… int loss. It’s not clear why the Virginia-based group was active in the Arkansas race. As a nonprofit regulated under section 501(c)(4) of the federal tax …"

"… o calls requesting comment. The outside spending was unprecedented for an Arkansas judicial race, and according to former state Supreme Court Justice An …"

Iowa, Michigan bombarded with political ads

By Michael Beckel

Open-seat Senate battles in Iowa and Michigan have attracted a flurry of TV ads.

Excerpts from this story referencing "North Carolina":

"… attracted more ads from Tuesday, Sept. 9, through Monday, Sept. 15:  North Carolina, where viewers saw about 4,800 ads, according to estimates by Kantar Media …"

"… attleground states: Alaska, Arkansas, Colorado, Iowa, Louisiana, Michigan, North Carolina and New Hampshire. Since the beginning of 2013, Republicans and conservati …"

Mitch McConnell revs ad machine

By Michael Beckel

Kentucky’s embattled senior senator has aired roughly one campaign ad every five minutes since Labor Day.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Senate races":

"… counting as separate elections. Super PACs are making their marks in other Senate races, too. In Virginia, for instance, incumbent Democratic Sen. Mark Warner is …"

GOP’s Senate hopes energized by Koch network ad blitz

By Michael Beckel

How many TV ads have groups connected to the billionaire brothers aired in your state?

Excerpts from this story referencing "Alaska":

"… lished themselves among the nation’s most powerful political forces. In Alaska, the Koch-backed Freedom Partners Chamber of Commerce has accused Democrat …"

"… ds in Michigan, 4,700 ads in Arkansas, 4,600 ads in Colorado, 3,600 ads in Alaska and 2,400 ads in Oregon, according to a Center for Public Integrity review …"

"… d by her GOP opponent, Thom Tillis. Meanwhile, both Udall of Colorado and Alaska’s Begich had each raised between double and triple the amounts of their …"

Can this 'dark money' group help the Democrats keep the Senate?

By Michael Beckel

Patriot Majority USA raises millions from unknown sources to play attack dog in the South.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Department of Labor":

"… t money is not publicly known. But a Center for Public Integrity review of Department of Labor, Federal Election Commission and Internal Revenue Service filings shows th …"

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 "Michigan":

"… ir allies, meanwhile, have bankrolled more ads in Georgia, Iowa, Kentucky, Michigan and Montana. Thanks to retirements of Democratic lawmakers in Montana, We …"

"… engers. And hotly contested open seat races are also underway in Iowa and Michigan, where long-serving Democratic senators have also announced plans to retir …"

"… ugh late August on TV ads from all sources per eligible voter is $3.64. 6) Michigan The open seat Senate race in Michigan pits Democratic Rep. Gary Peters ag …"

"… ces per eligible voter is $3.64. 6) Michigan The open seat Senate race in Michigan pits Democratic Rep. Gary Peters against former Secretary of State Terri L …"

How big telecom smothers city-run broadband

By Allan Holmes

Municipal broadband boosts business, but often stops at city limits thanks to lobbying muscle of telecom giants.

Excerpts from this story referencing "broadband":

"… the telecommunications giants are fighting against the spread of municipal broadband networks. For more than a decade, AT&T, Comcast, Time Warner Cable Inc …"

"… o pre-empt state laws that block municipalities from building or expanding broadband networks, hindering economic growth, the cities argue. If the FCC rules i …"

"… private telecommunications companies. To better understand the municipal broadband debate, the Center for Public Integrity traveled to two southern cities. T …"

"… r Public Integrity traveled to two southern cities. Tullahoma, which has a broadband network, and Fayetteville, North Carolina, which doesn’t. City-provided …"

Activists say gun debate overlooks gun-related deaths of children

By Kate Murphy and Jordan Rubio

An investigation found that at least 28,000 children and teens 19-years-old and younger were killed with guns in America over 10 years

Excerpts from this story referencing "South Carolina":

"… en he fatally shot himself with his father’s gun on Christmas in Conway, South Carolina. His father, who bought the gun after a previous break-in, was charged wit …"

Stronger self-defense laws spread, despite limited measure of impacts

By Jon LaFlamme

Stand your ground laws expand American's right to self defense, but their impact varies from state to state

Excerpts from this story referencing "Louisiana":

"… ows people greater leeway to act in self-defense in their homes. Texas and Louisiana, for example, passed laws that treat self-defense in workplaces and vehicl …"

"… ws21 found, based on a review of 200 cases in Michigan, Kentucky, Florida, Louisiana, Texas and Arizona — six of 31 states to recently expand their laws. The …"

"… said William Maze, president of Criminal Defense Attorneys of Michigan. Louisiana is one of those 18 states. So when Merritt Landry heard his dogs barking e …"

"… actively track the law’s effect. Some states have tried. In 2012, the Louisiana Legislature made it mandatory for law enforcement to conduct full investig …"

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