EPA: No comment on fracking air pollution

By Jim Morris and Lisa Song

No one at the Environmental Protection Agency has been willing to talk on the record about air pollution associated with fracking in Texas.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Pennsylvania":

"… ta, the Upper Green River Basin of Wyoming and the Marcellus Shale of Pennsylvania. Our first attempt at an on-the-record interview was with Ron Curry, the …"

Energy influence in North Dakota is expanding — so what?

By Nicholas Kusnetz and Jared Bennett

A Q & A with reporter Nicholas Kusnetz about the oil and gas industries growing influence in North Dakota.

Excerpts from this story referencing "energy":

"… going to be effective or not. …"

"… oing on in North Dakota is arguably the biggest thing going on in the U.S. energy scene today, and to a large degree, is responsible for the record surge in …"

"… ay, and to a large degree, is responsible for the record surge in domestic energy. What was interesting to me is that this is happening in people's backyard …"

"… ually interviewed because he is a Republican who previously worked for the energy industry. He is one of those people who saw this flaring issue and felt he …"

How oil and gas firms gained influence and transformed North Dakota

By Nicholas Kusnetz

Industry has transformed the state, but at what cost?

Excerpts from this story referencing "oil production":

"… ’s rugged prairie since the beginning of 2010, quadrupling the state’s oil production. From July 2011 through June 2013, the state collected $4 billion in oil t …"

"… il, the industry group, to mark a milestone in the growth of the state’s oil production. In May, Neset brought her colleagues at the education board (none of whom …"

"… rgets for reducing flaring, and would require that companies curtail their oil production if they are not hitting those targets. The goals, however — cutting fla …"

'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.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Republicans":

"… eviously, Klippenstein spent 26 years on Capitol Hill working for Missouri Republicans, including Sens. Roy Blunt and Kit Bond — the latter for whom he served …"

"… ts funders to the FEC. While Brian Klippenstein has financially supported Republicans such as 2012 presidential nominee Mitt Romney and House Speaker John Boehn …"

Air Force seeks less perfection in its nuclear missile corps

By R. Jeffrey Smith

The Air Force is having difficulties fielding missile officers who are not engaged in drug use, test cheating and deliberate disobedience.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Bruce Blair":

"… of some kind has a long history in the nuclear missile corps, according to Bruce Blair, a former deputy missile combat crew commander who is now a research schol …"

Ready for Hillary courts super PAC skeptics

By Michael Beckel

Ready for Hillary is courting 'Citizens United' skeptics — and finding success.

Excerpts from this story referencing "California":

"… claim financial backers from every U.S. state — although New Yorkers and Californians account for nearly half of the money it raised in 2013, according to fig …"

"… ork combined to give just shy of $1 million last year, as did residents of California. Only in seven states — Alaska, Idaho, Mississippi, Montana, North Dako …"

As drilling ravages Texas’ Eagle Ford Shale, residents 'living in a Petri dish’

By Jim Morris, Lisa Song and David Hasemyer

In partnership with InsideClimate News and The Weather Channel, Center examines oil industry exploitation of Texas’ Eagle Ford Shale.

Excerpts from this story referencing "consultant":

"… at they’ve had little success. Last March, Wilma Subra, an environmental consultant from Louisiana, and Sharon Wilson of the advocacy group Earthworks, accomp …"

"… TCEQ in 2009 and joined Air Alliance Houston, an environmental group, as a consultant in 2011. That year the group successfully helped lobby the legislature to …"

The story behind 'Big Oil, Bad Air'

By Jim Morris, David Hasemyer and Lisa Song

Texas regulators didn't make it easy to determine the environmental impacts of drilling in the Eagle Ford Shale.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Pennsylvania":

"… conversation on hydraulic fracturing — fracking — in contrast to, say, Pennsylvania’s Marcellus Shale or North Dakota’s Bakken. This oddity, along with t …"

Cold, damp, underground cheating

By R. Jeffrey Smith, Mattie Quinn and Douglas Birch

The ICBM force is not getting the Air Force’s high flyers.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Bruce Blair":

"… families, for your future, for your country, and for our security.” But Bruce Blair, a former ICBM officer who went on to lead a group called Global Zero that …"

William Koch emerges from shadow of famous siblings

By Michael Beckel

William Koch's steadily increasing political activity has gotten relatively little notice compared to that of brothers Charles and David.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Bush administration":

"… r of Vice President Dick Cheney’s secretive energy task force during the Bush administration — leads its lobbying operation. Knutson, who did not respond to message …"

Obamacare's hidden battle: insurance agents push state regulation of guides to new marketplaces

By Nicholas Kusnetz

Insurance agents talk state legislators into regulating Obamacare's consumer helpers.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Obama":

"… eling the initiative “reckless” and “ill-advised.” When President Obama finally signed the law in March 2010, the Affordable Care Act did include …"

"… -reach communities such as immigrants. It’s not a new concept. When the Obama Administration and its congressional allies began work on the health refor …"

Senators investigating Apple own company stock

By Dave Levinthal and Reity O'Brien

Heitkamp, Carper report stock together worth hundreds of thousands of dollars.

Lax state rules provide cover for sponsors of attack ads

By Alan Suderman

In 30 states it’s impossible to total how much money outside groups are spending on campaigns.

Excerpts from this story referencing "California":

"… nonprofits and other outside spending groups. Fifteen states — Alaska, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Illinois, Maryland, Massachusetts, North Carolina, …"

"… equires that in corporate-funded ads, the CEO appear in the spot; Alaska, California and North Carolina require independent expenditure groups to list their to …"

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 "Obama":

"… eople at the Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn., and President Obama promised tougher gun laws, the vote proved to be the latest in a long-runn …"

"… as LaPierre told a conservative audience in 2011, that President Obama, once re-elected, planned to “get busy dismantling and destroying our fi …"

"… rs, Keene now says the NRA has added an additional million since President Obama pleaded for new gun laws in the wake of the Newtown murders. Meanwhile th …"

'State Integrity Investigation' has blockbuster first year

By Nicholas Kusnetz

Sixteen states take Center's State Integrity Investigation to heart, initiate government reform

Excerpts from this story referencing "North Dakota":

"… nificant legislation has also been introduced in South Carolina, Maine and North Dakota. Where legislators have been slow to act, in some cases the executive bra …"

Conflicts of interest run rampant in state legislatures

By Nicholas Kusnetz

Legislation may overlap with business interests but part-time lawmakers vote anyway.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Law":

"… egislature meets for just 60 days each odd year and 30 days in even years. Lawmakers earn a $154 per diem payment while in session, but they receive no s …"

"… ive chambers sit on the lowest level, underneath the floor of the rotunda. Lawmakers’ dress ranges from casual suits and blouses with New Mexico flare …"

Donors use charity to push free-market policies in states

By Paul Abowd

Charity acts as screen for conservative foundations that feed network of state-based think tanks, media outlets.

Excerpts from this story referencing "California":

"… state Rep. Tom McMillin, who is also an ALEC member. Against the tide The California-based Tides Foundation, which Ball calls the “ideological opposite” of …"

IMPACT: More states seek reform after Center’s ‘State Integrity Investigation’

More states proposing new legislation after receiving poor grades

Excerpts from this story referencing "North Dakota":

"… re states have passed new measures. The latest actions come from Maine and North Dakota. In Maine, legislation to make it unlawful for state officials to leave th …"

"… several ethics bills expected to be debated this session. And lawmakers in North Dakota have introduced a package of ethics reform bills that would revamp the sta …"

Package of bills seeks ethics reform in North Dakota

By Nicholas Kusnetz

Poor grades from State Integrity Investigation yield push for changes

Excerpts from this story referencing "The Huffington Post":

"… ssing such initiatives.  "The CPI study was an eye-opener," Mock told The Huffington Post in August. In March, North Dakota received an F in eight of 14 categories …"

Revolving door swings freely in America's statehouses

By Nicholas Kusnetz

Anything goes in some states; lawmakers skirt rules in others

Excerpts from this story referencing "Vermont":

"… i, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Mexico, North Dakota, Ohio, Texas, Vermont and Wyoming. Some states have different rules for members of the legislati …"

Last-minute mega-donations fueled super PAC attacks

By Michael Beckel

Sheldon Adelson, Michael Bloomberg among eleventh-hour donors to unlimited spending groups.

Excerpts from this story referencing "California":

"… ve House races.Two of its favored candidates — Democrat Gloria McLeod of California and Democrat Dan Maffei of California — won.Super PACs can accept donati …"

"… idates — Democrat Gloria McLeod of California and Democrat Dan Maffei of California — won.Super PACs can accept donations of unlimited amounts from corporat …"

Rove-affiliated groups spend $175 million, lose 21 of 30 races

By Michael Beckel and Reity O'Brien

Super PAC American Crossroads goes 3-10, nonprofit Crossroads GPS goes 7-17

Excerpts from this story referencing "Todd Akin":

"… ave suffered from “sub-optimal” candidates, in Collegio’s words.Rep. Todd Akin, the GOP Senate candidate in Missouri, saw his standing in the polls drop …"

Elizabeth Warren, Bruce Mann

Democrats expand Senate grip but fail to win House

By The Associated Press

Democrats solidify their Senate rule but Republicans will still run House in 2nd Obama term

Excerpts from this story referencing "California":

"… Carolina and Pennsylvania; they picked up one open seat each in Arkansas, California, Indiana, North Carolina and Oklahoma currently held by Democrats who reti …"

"… red or ran for another office. Four incumbent Democrats from California were defeated by challengers from their own party, including 80-year old l …"

Democrats maintain control of Senate

By The Associated Press

Dems win GOP seats in Indiana, Massachusetts; McCaskill survives in Missouri

Excerpts from this story referencing "Vermont":

"… handle. Independent Sen. Bernie Sanders won a second term in Vermont. Democratic Sens. Sheldon Whitehouse in Rhode Island, Ben Cardin in Maryla …"

Walter Dalton

Republicans try to pick up more governors' offices

By The Associated Press

Republicans win NC governor's race in bid to broaden party's hold on governorships nationwide

Excerpts from this story referencing "Vermont":

"… 's mansion remained in Democratic hands Tuesday, as did those in Missouri, Vermont, Delaware and West Virginia. Chief executives of conservativ …"

"… states, Democrats easily prevailed. Gov. Peter Shumlin won another term in Vermont, Gov. Jack Markell did the same in Delaware and state Sen. Maggie Hassan w …"

Super PACs spend big for Romney in final weeks of campaign

By Michael Beckel and Andrea Fuller

Super PACs and nonprofits spent $190 million in the last three weeks of the election on the presidential race

Excerpts from this story referencing "Todd Akin":

"… ll.McCaskill’s allies spent about $3 million during the same period.Rep. Todd Akin, her Republican opponent, bucked calls from his own party to drop out of t …"

Redistricting: GOP and Dems alike have cloaked the process in secrecy

By Nicholas Kusnetz

GOP, Dems alike have cloaked process in secrecy

Excerpts from this story referencing "Law":

"… eemed discriminatory or because Lawmakers could not agree on a final plan. Lawsuits are still pending in eight states. While the lines in those states ar …"

"… y the Brennan Center for Justice,part of the New York University School of Law, Republicans pushed 11 additional districts to their advantage, meaning 24 …"

"… h a claim. In effect, said Justin Levitt, a redistricting expert at Loyola Law School in Los Angeles, the court has said that too much partisan redistric …"

"… aid the proposal would waste millions of taxpayer dollars.Levitt of Loyola Law School and others say there’s no single system that works for every stat …"

Donor profile: Republican Governors Association

By Alexandra Duszak and John Dunbar

Quick stats on the biggest financial backers of Election 2012

Excerpts from this story referencing "Tom Corbett":

"… lion to the Florida Republican Party (2010)$6 million to Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Corbett (2010)$3 million to Texas Gov. Rick Perry (2010)Background:The Republican …"

"… in Pennsylvania, the RGA contributed $6 million of the $28.7 million Gov. Tom Corbett raised, including a $1.5 million contribution from an affiliated grou …"

Nonprofit profile: Patriot Majority USA

By Alexandra Duszak

Quick stats on the nonprofit group

Excerpts from this story referencing "Denny Rehberg":

"… idates including Rep. Rick Berg, R-N.D., Sen. Dean Heller, R-Nev. and Rep. Denny Rehberg, R-Mont.In August, Patriot Majority USA launched “Stop the Greed Agenda, …"

"… coons,” two ads that attacked the Koch brothers.“Means” opposed Rep. Denny Rehberg, R-Mont.“Minimum Wage” attacked Rep. Rick Berg, R-N.D., for voting aga …"

Daily Disclosure: North Dakota's Berg absorbs one-two ad punch

By Rachael Marcus

Republican favorite in U.S. Senate race hit with nonprofit, Democratic Party ads.

Excerpts from this story referencing "North Dakota":

"… er at the end says, and we will check it out. …"

"… ble for paying for all their medications out-of-pocket, Factcheck.org says.North Dakota, a state that The New York Times predicted as “Berg’s to lose,” &nbs …"

"… has kept her competitive. Her folksy attitude has only upped her appeal to North Dakota voters.Heitkamp has also faced a stream of attack ads. Like the anti-Berg …"

"… kamp yesterday. The ads have not yet been posted online.The Senate race in North Dakota has attracted $5.1 million in outside spending, according to the Center fo …"

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