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 "Pat McCrory":

"… hat aired more than 1,700 times. The ad also mentioned North Carolina Gov. Pat McCrory, a Republican who wasn’t on the ballot this year. In August, Carolina R …"

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 "Center for Responsive Politics":

"… r sector — more than $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 …"

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 "America":

"… and David Koch, drug makers and the cable television industry. The group, American Commitment, received 87 percent of its $13 million in funding between 201 …"

"… mber of Commerce, the Center to Protect Patient Rights and Free Enterprise America, according to tax filings reviewed by the Center for Public Integrity. Th …"

"… Koch brothers’ secret bank” by Politico — has given $6.4 million to American Commitment, including $140,000 in 2013, according to tax records. The Ce …"

"… cted political consultant Sean Noble — contributed about $4.8 million to American Commitment in 2012. And another Koch network group headed by Noble, Free …"

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 "Senate":

"… d Morning America," "Today" and "CBS This Morning" — attracted more U.S. Senate race-focused ads during the 2014 midterm elections than any other televisi …"

"… on of ABC's "Good Morning America" led all comers, with nearly 30,000 U.S. Senate-focused ads during the 2014 election cycle. "Today" and "CBS This Morning" …"

"… nt. In all, political candidates and groups aired more than 1 million U.S. Senate race-focused TV ads alone ahead of the 2014 midterms, as Republicans this …"

"… 0) and sitcom "Big Bang Theory" (more than 14,500) attracted the most U.S. Senate-specific ads. Other shows that aired at least 11,000 U.S. Senate-focused …"

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 "Americans for Prosperity":

"… ked among Americans for Prosperity’s donors over the years.    …"

"… raised about $26 million and spent about $18 million. Founded in 2004, Americans for Prosperity is organized as a “social welfare” nonprofit under the U.S. tax code. …"

"… ies — particularly his “ObamaCare” health care reform law. In 2013, Americans for Prosperity spent nearly $22 million on “print, radio and television ads to increase …"

"… ded to a Dec. 6 runoff election against Republican Bill Cassidy. In 2013, Americans for Prosperity also spent nearly $9 million supporting its state chapters, financial docu …"

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 "Politics":

"… much as the Virginia Progress PAC, according to the Center for Responsive Politics. Virginia “is a rich state for us in terms of members and supporters an …"

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 "Senate":

"… Public Integrity tracked political advertising in races for the U.S. Senate, state-level offices and state ballot measures. Use th …"

"… s. They were right. On Tuesday night, Republicans won control of the U.S. Senate for the first time in eight years. In many of the states the GOP won Tues …"

"… ral Election Commission ruling in 2010. Democrats, who enjoyed a six-seat Senate majority going into Election Day, attempted to defend themselves from an e …"

"… als, and liberal donors dug deep to support a pro-Democratic super PAC — Senate Majority PAC — that became the top sponsor of Senate-focused campaign ad …"

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 "North Carolina":

"… ive and negative messages. The closest races had the most mudslinging. In North Carolina, where the U.S. Sen. Kay Hagan, a Democrat, and Thom Tillis, a Republican, …"

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 "Harry Reid":

"… ate.   Led by seasoned political disciples of Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., Senate Majority PAC has raised more than $53 million this cycle. …"

"… n by a couple of Democratic aides, it has close ties to the leadership, to Harry Reid. It’s almost as if this is the return of ‘soft money,’” said Bill …"

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 "Federal Election Commission":

"… ed as of mid-October: $32 million Amount all outside groups have told the Federal Election Commission they’ve spent on North Carolina’s Senate race: $76 million Ratio …"

"… result of that analysis. Other sources include the Cook Political Report, Federal Election Commission, Center for Responsive Politics and Sunlight Foundation. Rachel Baye, Car …"

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 "Senate":

"… r Public Integrity is tracking political advertising in races for the U.S. Senate and state-level offices. Use these two, interactive features to see who is …"

"… ng the shots and where the money is being spent. After this year’s U.S. Senate races are run and done, the notoriously nasty contests will likely limp in …"

"… . Evil — one million television ads. Through Monday, about 908,000 U.S. Senate-focused TV ads have aired this election cycle, according to a Center for P …"

"… ed, to say nothing of the deluge of messaging that would flood anticipated Senate runoff contests in Georgia and Louisiana, the million-ad mark will be ecli …"

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 "Joe Ricketts":

"… Ending Spending Action Fund, a group founded by longtime Republican donor Joe Ricketts, the former head of online brokerage firm TD Ameritrade whose family owns …"

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 "Politics":

"… Thomas Mills, who publishes political commentary and analysis website PoliticsNC.com. “Other than watching the World Series playoffs, I haven’t even …"

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 "North Carolina":

"… sed attack ads splashed across Arkansas, Colorado, Kentucky, Louisiana and North Carolina. The National Republican Senatorial Committee produced about 1,900 demonst …"

"… 1,900 demonstrably nasty ads targeting Alaska, Arkansas, Colorado, Iowa or North Carolina. But Senate election ugliness smacked Kansas harder than any other state …"

"… other station nationwide. It also led all stations the week before. North Carolina’s Senate race, where Democratic Sen. Kay Hagan faces Republican Thom Til …"

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 "Arkansas":

"… $360,000 to boost Republican candidates in the Nebraska gubernatorial and Arkansas attorney general contests this cycle. The Law Enforcement Alliance of …"

"… 2010. This time, it spent nearly $165,000 to attack one candidate for the Arkansas Supreme Court. Less is known about newer entities. Arizona Save Our …"

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 "Senate":

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

"… e shots and where the money is being spent. When it comes to winning U.S. Senate races’ television ad wars, Team Blue has seized the advantage a month be …"

"… sing tracking service. Democrats proved particularly dominant in the U.S. Senate races being waged in Alaska, Georgia, Louisiana and Michigan, where they b …"

"… ats were producing more TV ads than Republicans, overall, in key Senate battleground states​​. As September wore on, however, the GOP ate …"

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 "North Carolina":

"… te elections, where three political ads run every five minutes in Iowa and North Carolina.  For state-level races ranging from governor to state board of educa …"

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 "Barack Obama":

"… rolling scores of ads targeting down-ballot races that criticize President Barack Obama. In the Tar Heel State, embattled incumbent Sen. Kay Hagan, a Democrat, i …"

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 "Nebraska":

"… impact, there has still been an increase in spending from such groups. In Nebraska, independent groups upended the traditional dynamic by helping push politi …"

"… Jon Bruning to win the GOP nomination for governor in the May primary. “Nebraska has never seen the kind of third-party spending like it saw in 2014 from a …"

"… who led Bruning’s campaign. “The parties play a role, but at least in Nebraska, it’s no longer a kingmaker role.” While it’s a midterm cycle for f …"

"… r eligible voter, was second, followed by Maryland ($3.48), Nebraska ($3.12) and Illinois ($2.94). Spending in all five states i …"

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 "Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission":

"… s of groups have flourished in the wake of the U.S. Supreme Court’s Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission ruling that loosened campaign spending rules for companies. Gen …"

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 "Harry Reid":

"… social welfare” nonprofit run by a close ally of Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev. — a preeminent Koch brothers naysayer who even maintains an anti …"

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 "Harry Reid":

"… ed Patriot Majority USA is led by a staunch ally of Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., who has demonized the Koch brothers as “un-American” and rail …"

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 "Senate races":

"… Obama’s final two years in office squarely depends on a handful of U.S. Senate races now entering their final phase. So far in all Senate races, candidates, p …"

"… andful of U.S. Senate races now entering their final phase. So far in all Senate races, candidates, parties and other political power players have aired more tha …"

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 "Washington":

"… Now the fight has gone national. The Federal Communications Commission in Washington, D.C., is considering requests from Chattanooga, Tennessee, and Wilson, No …"

"… read More than 130 cities from Norwood, Massachusetts, to Clallam County, Washington, currently offer fiber or cable Internet connections to their communities, …"

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 "Arizona State University":

"… ered at the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication at Arizona State University For every U.S. soldier killed in Afghanistan during 11 years of war, at l …"

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 "Trayvon Martin":

"… before the highly publicized 2012 shooting death in Florida of 17-year-old Trayvon Martin by George Zimmerman. News21 found 28 attempts in state legislatures to sca …"

‘Dr. Evil’ fuels dogfight between AKC, Humane Society

By John Dunbar and Erin Quinn

Public relations pro, food industry behind website, ads blasting Humane Society.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Washington":

"… the lawsuit was a former employee.   …"

"… less of how they are treated. The Humanewatch.org ad currently running in Washington’s metro trains says that HSUS gives 1 percent of its budget to pet shelt …"

"… early $16 million in a settlement reached in a U.S. District Court in Washington. Heymann said its share of the settlement, which was not disclosed, will b …"

Chattanooga asks FCC for help in spreading broadband

By Allan Holmes and Amirah Al Idrus

Industry-backed law prohibits expansion of cities' Internet service

Excerpts from this story referencing "Comcast Corp.":

"… th Internet speeds they couldn’t purchase from private providers such as Comcast Corp. and Charter Communications Inc. “For our city to have the economic deve …"