Pro-McConnell nonprofit hit with IRS complaint

By Michael Beckel

A watchdog organization wants the IRS to investigate a nonprofit that spent millions backing Republican Sen. Mitch McConnell.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Federal Election Commission":

"… ts website. Ever since the U.S. Supreme Court’s 2010 Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission ruling, certain types of donor-shielding nonprofit corporations have been …"

Court case pushed by think tank could leave uninsured out in the cold

By Wendell Potter

Supreme Court case backed by think tank hinges on single sentence in Affordable Care Act.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Health":

"… in: An Insurance Company Insider Speaks Out on How Corporate PR is Killing Health Care and Deceiving Americans and Obamacare: What’s in It for M …"

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 …"

Nuclear weapons lab used taxpayer funds to obtain more taxpayer funds

By R. Jeffrey Smith

A government auditor uncovers a textbook case of lobbying by a contractor at federal expense.

Excerpts from this story referencing "White House":

"… he DOE a total of $226,000 that it paid Wilson. Wilson, who worked at the White House under President George H.W. Bush and now directs the South Dakota School o …"

Juvenile facilities strive to foster ‘family engagement’

States adopt programs to involve families in rehabilitation of young offenders.

Excerpts from this story referencing "California":

"… ctor of the Program in Public Interest Law and Policy at the University of California, Los Angeles, law school, labels such outreach “family-driven justice” …"

Ballot measure backers spend big, win big

By Liz Essley Whyte

Of the most expensive ballot races, top spenders won over voters in 21 of 25 contests.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Jerry Brown":

"… omy. No ads ran in support of the ban. And in Democratic California, Gov. Jerry Brown led a group of supporters who together put nearly $21 million worth of ads …"

Flush with mystery money, Kentucky nonprofit haunts Grimes’ Senate bid

By Michael Beckel

Formerly modest nonprofit becomes deep-pocketed, dark money benefactor of Republican Sen. Mitch McConnell.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Barack Obama":

"… me store. There, among monsters, ghouls and evil clowns, a vinyl President Barack Obama mask sells for $24.99 — the “scariest one of them all,” one shopper …"

Corporations, advocacy groups spend big on ballot measures

By Liz Essley Whyte

Corporations and national advocacy groups are throwing big dollars behind TV ads before voters decide 158 state ballot measures.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Charlie Crist":

"… turn out and vote for the Democratic gubernatorial candidate, former Gov. Charlie Crist. Billionaire casino operator Sheldon Adelson has given $4 million to the …"

GAO takes on Medicare Advantage spending

By Fred Schulte

GAO will investigate program spending.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Bush administration":

"… ied the allegations. In a separate civil case, Josh Valdez, a former Bush administration health official, alleges that two Puerto Rico Medicare Advantage health pl …"

Center for Public Integrity hires Carrie Levine as federal politics reporter

By The Center for Public Integrity

Carrie Levine — former Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington research director — to investigate money in politics.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Federal Election Commission":

"… aign finance and political influence issues in the post-Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission era of politics. She will also contribute to "Primary Source," a 2014 Webb …"

A call for more scrutiny of private Medicare Advantage plans

By Fred Schulte

Researchers say aggressive billing by private plans may require more scrutiny

Excerpts from this story referencing "Senate":

"… ng Medicare Advantage, from January through June of 2014, according to the Senate records. But critics argue that some health plans exaggerate how sick the …"

Obamacare helps millions, but falls short in many ways

By Wendell Potter

The Affordable Care Act has reduced the ranks of the uninsured, but cost of care must be addressed.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Health":

"… in: An Insurance Company Insider Speaks Out on How Corporate PR is Killing Health Care and Deceiving Americans and Obamacare: What’s in It for M …"

Investigators find Islamic State used ammo made in 21 countries, including America

By Julia Harte and R. Jeffrey Smith

A new report from an arms tracking group highlights how easily munitions shipped to the Middle East shift from one owner to another.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Senate":

"… ven a chance to review them in advance. Between 2003 and 2013, the senior Senate staff member in charge of that review process was Thomas Moore on the Fore …"

Controversial Republican telemarketer forms super PAC

By Dave Levinthal

Gabriel S. Joseph III's past political efforts include an anti-Obama spam text message campaign that prompted legal complaints.

Excerpts from this story referencing "King":

"… sing has also been paid for work on behalf of clients including Rep. Steve King, R-Iowa; Rep. Tim Huelskamp, R-Kansas; the Republican Party of Alaska; the …"

Megabanks have prison financial services market locked up

By Daniel Wagner

Bank of America and JP Morgan Chase & Co. avoid competitive bidding process in contracts serving federal prisoners.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Washington":

"… : DynCorp International, a major military contractor based just outside of Washington; and Advanced Technologies Group, a Kansas-based technology company that t …"

"… tors and abusing their discretion, said Kathleen Clark, a professor at the Washington University School of Law who studies government ethics. Treasury’s broad …"

Inside the virtual tollbooth at many U.S. prisons

By Daniel Wagner, Eleanor Bell and Sarah Whitmire

How Reporters Dan Wagner and Eleanor Bell investigated a fee structure that's oppressive for many inmates' families.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Washington":

"… ked carefully at their tools and authorities. There are two regulators in Washington that could have the authority to look at prison bankers’ monopolies, and …"

Prison bankers cash in on captive customers

By Daniel Wagner

Private company profits by helping prisons squeeze inmates' families for cash.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Indiana":

"… , Shapiro was unaware of JPay’s own $1.95 fee to deposit money orders in Indiana, declaring, “If someone sends $100 with a money order to an Indiana inma …"

"… s in Indiana, declaring, “If someone sends $100 with a money order to an Indiana inmate, that inmate gets $100. … I am positive.” Two days later, he c …"

The 47-year-old nuclear elephant in the room

By Douglas Birch and R. Jeffrey Smith

A growing number of U.S. experts say that feigning ignorance about Israel’s nuclear arsenal creates more trouble than it averts.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Barack Obama":

"… be used due to the political sensitivity surrounding the topic. President Barack Obama made clear that this 4-decade-old U.S. policy would persist at his first W …"

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 …"

Russian bank hires two former U.S. senators

By Alexander Cohen

U.S. sanctions against Russia are becoming a boon for Washington's lobbyists.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Washington":

"… pany Rosneft. Last month, Russian gas firm OAO Novatek retained Washington, D.C., public relations firm Qorvis to lobby the administration and Congre …"

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, …"

Lobbying disclosures leave public in the dark

By Marcelo Rochabrun and Dave Levinthal

Despite efforts to beef up laws regulating lobbyists, public is in the dark when it comes to what firms are up to in Washington.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Barack Obama":

"… minating their registrations rather than doing less influencing. President Barack Obama’s executive actions against the profession may have prompted lobbyists t …"

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 "Washington":

"… ifying federal gun laws because that could undo NRA legislative success in Washington. “I think that is a misguided distraction,” said Todd Rathner, an NRA …"

‘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 …"

Washington's cynical misinformation game

By Wendell Potter

Commentary: the role of distortion in health care politics.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Washington":

"… back. When I worked in the insurance industry, I attended many meetings in Washington with NFIB staff during which we planned a campaign to make sure Congress d …"

"… of reporters checked tax filings. That’s the way the game is played in Washington, where ethical principles that apply elsewhere are blatantly flouted. And …"

Ten major findings from our investigations so far this year

By Jared Bennett and Sarah Whitmire

Investigations from the first half of 2014

Excerpts from this story referencing "Japan":

"… the financial industry’s proxy voices on Capitol Hill. Keep reading 3. Japan has no urgent plutonium needs, but a new plant will soon make more than 17 …"

"… on make more than 17,000 pounds of it each year Starting this October, a Japanese nuclear fuel plant 22 years in the making will begin churning out a nuc …"

"… e an energy source for the country. But the key word there is, eventually. Japan can't currently convert the explosive nuclear component. With that kind of …"

Briefing the president but keeping the public in the dark

By James Arkin

Washington kept grim early estimates of the death and destruction from a nuclear war with Russia secret for more than half a century.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Harvard":

"… Restricted Data: The Nuclear Secrecy Blog,” and a former instructor at Harvard and Georgetown universities. “It’s about comparative destruction, …"

How Medicare Advantage plans code for cash

By Fred Schulte

Federal study criticizes Medicare Advantage and calls for changes.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Health":

"… years. Analyzing government data never before made public, Department of Health and Human Services researchers found that many plans exaggerate how sick t …"

"… are and Medicaid Services, part of HHS. Kronick directs the HHS Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, whose mission is to improve Health care delivery …"

"… said Dr. David Wennberg, a researcher at the Dartmouth Institute for Health Policy and Clinical Practice who has studied Medicare billing trends. Hea …"

"… lth Policy and Clinical Practice who has studied Medicare billing trends. Health care fraud expert Malcolm Sparrow, a professor at Harvard’s Kennedy Scho …"

Watchdog files IRS complaint against Koch-connected 60 Plus Association

By Michael Beckel

Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington is asking the IRS to investigate the 60 Plus Association.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Department of Justice":

"… In the newly filed complaint, Sloan urged the IRS to refer the case to the Department of Justice for prosecution if the agency determines that the 60 Plus Association has …"

Nuclear weapons lab employee fired after publishing scathing critique of the arms race

By Douglas Birch

Los Alamos lets a 17-year employee go after retroactively classifying his published article.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Washington":

"… Jeffrey Smith contributed to this article. …"

"… exico lab. But he says he believes the sudden firing was instead part of a Washington-inspired campaign of retribution for his refusal to stay on message and su …"

"… ts at the nonprofit National Security Archive, affiliated with George Washington University. “We have a bunch of postings on our site [referring to Israe …"

"… he said, he got a call from the lab’s top government relations office in Washington, Patrick Woehrle, a former congressional staffer who had worked closely wi …"

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