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 "Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee":

"… s — more than any other single week during the 2014 election cycle. The Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee, National Republican Senatorial Committee and pro-Democrat super PAC Senat …"

Ex-senators Breaux and Lott confirm lobbying for Russian bank on Ukraine sanctions

By Alexander Cohen

A new filing says two former senators were part of a team that earned $150,000 for roughly a month of work.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Russia":

"… er Sens. Trent Lott and John Breaux were part of a team paid $150,000 by a Russian bank to lobby on U.S. sanctions over the Ukraine crisis, according to a n …"

"… ington, D.C., were retained over the summer by a banking subsidiary of the Russian oil giant Gazprombank and lobbied the Senate and the Department of State …"

"… e no longer expected to act as a lobbyist” for the bank. Gazprombank is Russia’s third largest bank. On July 16 — a month and a half before Brea …"

"… ing — the U.S. Treasury Department added the bank to a list of Russian firms barred from debt financing with U.S. institutions. Lott and Breaux …"

Bloomberg helps Democratic governors' group close gap on Republicans

By Ben Wieder

The Republican Governors Association is outpacing its Democratic counterpart but Democrats are catching up.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Michael Bloomberg":

"… ons and former New York City mayor, billionaire and political independent, Michael Bloomberg. The groups were neck-and-neck in the most recent quarter, with the Democ …"

McAuliffe names panel to reform Virginia’s ethics laws

By Nicholas Kusnetz

Governor cites Center’s State Integrity Investigation in announcing new initiative.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Global Integrity":

"… ility and transparency in state government released in 2012 by the Center, Global Integrity and Public Radio International. The commission will address a number of is …"

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 "president":

"… 2.5 million to Patriot Majority USA since January 2011. Craig Varoga, the president of Patriot Majority USA, declined to answer specific questions from the Ce …"

"… ependent group that helped Reid win re-election. He’s also worked on the presidential campaigns of Democrats Bill Clinton, Al Gore and John Kerry, among othe …"

Democrats embrace 'McCutcheon' decision

By Michael Beckel and Dave Levinthal

Ahead of high-stakes battle for the Senate, Democrats create massive fundraising group blessed by contentious 'McCutcheon' decision.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission":

"… and “stand against” McCutcheon and the 2010 campaign finance ruling Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission, which allowed corporations to make unlimited expenditures for or against …"

Message-maven culture killing compromise in Washington

By Wendell Potter

Commentary: Political foes prefer to score points rather than work together on solutions.

Excerpts from this story referencing "House Appropriations Committee":

"… and message mavens. Lilly, who served as clerk and staff director of the House Appropriations Committee before moving to the liberal-leaning think tank, suggested to lawmakers, w …"

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.

Outside money pouring into governors races

By Ben Wieder

Dem, GOP associations are spending more than double as much on governors' races in the 2014 cycle than at the same period in 2010.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Virginia":

"… kes sense, said Kyle Kondik, a political analyst at the University of Virginia’s Center for Politics. “The RGA and the DGA are first incumbent-prote …"

Tobacco money fuels gay Republicans, business organizations

By Michael Beckel

Reynolds American gave thousands of dollars to politically active nonprofits such as the Log Cabin Republicans, Americans for Prosperity.

Senate power players quarrel over fate of e-filing

By Michael Beckel

A growing number of senators voluntarily e-file their campaign finance reports. But will the practice ever be mandated?

Excerpts from this story referencing "Mitch McConnell":

"… ry Reid, D-Nev., who signed on earlier this month. Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., however, has “objected to passing the bill by unanimous consent, …"

Billionaires boost Republican governors group past Democrats in fundraising

By Ben Wieder

GOP governors' group outraises counterpart, but Democrats still expected to win a few races.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Paul Singer":

"… ns and billionaires like industrialist David Koch. Koch, hedge fund chief Paul Singer, casino mogul Sheldon Adelson, and Leslie Wexner, CEO of the Limited Brand …"

GOP governors group dwarfs Democrats in fundraising

By Ben Wieder and John Dunbar

This year features 36 governors' races; Republicans enter with a big fundraising advantage over Democrats.

Excerpts from this story referencing "pharmaceutical giant":

"… rers of America, donated $325,000. Health insurer Aetna gave $300,000 and pharmaceutical giant Pfizer gave $275,650. Other top donors included hedge fund billionaire env …"

Do senators fear the Internet?

By Rachel Baye

Nearly one-fifth of upper chamber members say they support e-filing campaign finance reports — but won't be this week.

Senate Democrats' January of doom

By Dave Levinthal

DSCC drenches supporters in negativity to wring cash from them.

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

"… 2014 midterms. But since late December, in a bid to raise big bucks, the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee has shown little such confidence, expressing itself with equal parts hyste …"

Fighting the 'spin' war over Obamacare

By Wendell Potter

Commentary: GOP topping Dems with message discipline.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Michael Moore":

"… as the central message of a campaign to persuade the public that filmmaker Michael Moore was advocating such a takeover in his movie SiCKO. Two and a half years l …"

Koch-backed nonprofit spent record cash in 2012

By Michael Beckel

Americans for Prosperity, a conservative nonprofit, spent $122 million last year — exponentially more than it ever has.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Americans for Prosperity":

"… e IRS by Friday. Alan Suderman contributed to this report.     …"

"… mation in 2004 through 2011. During its previous eight years of existence, Americans for Prosperity spent a combined $72 million, a review of Internal Revenue Service records …"

"… to engage on our issues, we go all-in," said Levi Russell, a spokesman for Americans for Prosperity. "You can expect that to continue." Organized as a “social welfare” no …"

"… “social welfare” nonprofit under Sec. 501(c)(4) of the U.S. tax code, Americans for Prosperity advocates for “a limited government and free markets.” While these non …"

Methodology

By Ben Wieder

'Puppet states' project required collection of data from 38 states, plus extensive analysis.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Democratic Governors Association":

"… national political groups, such as the Republican Governors Association or Democratic Governors Association, were among the donors. Groups were classified as in-state or out-of-stat …"

Was the glut of outside spending in 2012 state races just the start?

By Bill Buzenberg

You can expect more money — and ads — pouring into state races next year based on new Center analysis of 2012 election.

'Citizens United' ruling helped unions win state elections

By Alan Suderman and Ben Wieder

National unions, business groups focused on states in 2012 elections with unions gaining the edge, new analysis shows.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Bob Perry":

"… lson and his wife gave the RGA $2 million. The late Texas homebuilder Bob Perry gave $2.5 million in 2012. Billionaire hedge fund manager Paul S …"

West Virginia races primed for super PAC activity

By Michael Beckel

'West Virginians for Results' registered by D.C. attorney with strong ties to Republicans.

Excerpts from this story referencing "PAC":

"… blicans may have contested primaries.     …"

"… is the Washington, D.C., office of the law firm Clark Hill PLC. The super PAC’s treasurer is listed as James “Jim” Tyrrell III, a Clark Hill attor …"

"… with West Virginians for Results, though he was not surprised that a super PAC would be focused on the state. "You're probably going to see a lot of sup …"

"… uld be focused on the state. "You're probably going to see a lot of super PACs pop up," he said. “Are they for us or against us?” Wyatt asked of We …"

'America Votes' spent nearly $1 million on Wisconsin recall

By Adam Wollner

Progressive nonprofit, fueled by unions, targeted Wisconsin recall elections in 2011 and 2012.

OPINION: an outbreak of bipartisanship

By Wendell Potter

Republicans, Democrats work together to expand Medicaid.

IRS scandal sparks fundraising blitz

By Dave Levinthal

Numerous candidates, committees fundraising off agency's targeting of conservative groups.

Retiring senators sitting on $10.5 million

By Michael Beckel

Eight retiring senators are collectively sitting on $10.5 million.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Senate Finance Committee":

"… at the end of his sixth term in January 2015. The chairman of the powerful Senate Finance Committee still has nearly $5 million in his campaign account. At the other end of …"

How governors' associations keep donations secret

By Paul Abowd

Political groups led by state executives increasingly raising undisclosed cash through nonprofits.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Democratic Governors Association":

"… Thursday, the Washington, D.C.-based Republican Governors Association and Democratic Governors Association together have poured tens of millions of dollars of secret money into nonp …"

Democrats seeking money for Massachusetts' special Senate election

By Michael Beckel

DSCC solicits funds ahead of Massachusetts special election.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Scott Brown":

"… n for the NRSC did not immediately respond to a request for comment. Sen. Scott Brown, R-Mass., and his Democratic rival, Elizabeth Warren, signed a similar out …"

Tester offers e-filing amendment to budget bill

By Michael Beckel

Montana Democrat Jon Tester offers budget amendment requiring e-filing of campaign finance disclosures.

Fox News host Sean Hannity bankrolls Republicans despite assertion he's not one

By Michael Beckel

Fox News host's political giving benefits Republicans despite assertion he's not one.

Excerpts from this story referencing "general election":

"… . She then refunded $2,100 to Hannity since she wouldn't be running in the general election against then-Sen. Hillary Clinton, D-N.Y., opting instead to run for New Y …"

News Corp. leans left by donating to Democrats

By Dave Levinthal

Media powerhouse's PAC bankrolls liberals despite reputation for conservatism.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Ronald Reagan":

"… s secretary; Oliver North, a national security official for President Ronald Reagan; former Republican presidential candidate Mike Huckabee; sy …"

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