Money in Politics
41 views | +0 today
Follow
 
Scooped by 28ftp
onto Money in Politics
Scoop.it!

Flying colors for Alaska on campaign finance - Fairbanks Daily News-Miner

Flying colors for Alaska on campaign finance - Fairbanks Daily News-Miner | Money in Politics | Scoop.it
The National Institute on Money in State Politics, which periodically releases tidbits of interesting information about state-level issues across the U.S., this week issued their report card for state laws on campaign finance disclosure.
more...
No comment yet.
Your new post is loading...
Scooped by 28ftp
Scoop.it!

New conservative group aims to build GOP support for reducing influence of big donors

By Matea Gold January 13


Conservative political consultant John Pudner said he realized that voter attitudes about political money had curdled into dangerous cynicism after several encounters he had last year.

[...]

So Pudner — who gained notice last year for helping tea-party-backed candidate Dave Brat unseat then-House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-Va.) — decided to make an unusual move. He signed on to run a new group, Take Back Our Republic, charged with the difficult task of building conservative support for reducing the influence of wealthy interests on politics.

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by 28ftp
Scoop.it!

It’s Time for Conservatives to Fight Corruption, by Jay Cost, National Review

It’s Time for Conservatives to Fight Corruption, by Jay Cost, National Review | Money in Politics | Scoop.it
Crony capitalism, subsidies, tax breaks, and corporate welfare all hit the middle class hardest.
more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by 28ftp
Scoop.it!

Is It Sheldon Adelson’s World?

When money in politics gets this big, when it can make elected officials bow and scrape in two different countries at the same time, it is troubling. I’m sure Adelson cares deeply about Israel, but he lacks any sense of limits in how he exercises his extraordinary financial power — power he is using to simultaneously push Israel and America toward eliminating any two-state solution between Israelis and Palestinians, toward defunding the Palestinian Authority and toward a confrontation with Iran, not a diplomatic solution. People need to know this.

The most important bonds between Israel and America always emerged from the bottom up — a mutual respect between two democracy-loving peoples. Money can’t buy those bonds, but it can threaten them by going to excess — by taking Israel’s true good will in America and using it to help one party “stick it” to the president, one big donor drive his extreme agenda, one party appear more pro-Israel than the other for electoral reasons or one Israeli politician win re-election. People who go “all the way” like this will one day go over a cliff. They will regret it. So will the rest of us.
more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by 28ftp
Scoop.it!

Republicans take up casino donor's fight against Internet gambling | WashingtonExaminer.com

While Graham and Adelson are certainly of one mind on all things Israel, this week highlighted another issue (far less grave than a potential war with Iran) where Adelson is well served by Graham's policy preferences: banning Internet gambling.

Graham's home state, heavily evangelical, is very opposed to gambling. This makes his opposition to Internet gambling sensible, but it also makes his partnership with Adelson odd.

Adelson is the chairman and CEO of the Las Vegas Sands Corporation, a titan in the casino industry. He's the 12th richest man in America, worth $32 billion, according to Forbes. He's also a major Republican donor and fundraising, having spent $100 million of his own money to help Republicans in the 2012 elections.
more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by 28ftp
Scoop.it!

The Koch Brothers Are Lobbying to Eliminate an Obscure Government Agency | BillMoyers.com

Despite his best efforts, Koch’s crusade against “corporate welfare” didn’t catch on several decades ago. But as the Koch brothers have slowly gained influence within the Republican Party — ultimately establishing what amounts to a shadow party of their own within the GOP — there’s evidence that Charles Koch’s libertarian philosophy is taking root and there’s no better example of that than the Ex-Im Bank fight. A constellation of groups backed by the brothers, including Americans for Prosperity, have been organizing to eradicate the Ex-Im Bank for months. “I would not say it’s coordinated — not at all,” Ellender says when asked how closely Koch Industries has been working with the advocacy groups and think tanks leading the Ex-Im Bank fight. He says Koch’s effort to shutter the outfit is “part of a macro strategy to eliminate subsidies, mandates and government-created market distortions where they exist.”
more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by 28ftp
Scoop.it!

AutoNation CEO: I don't see subprime loan trouble

AutoNation CEO: I don't see subprime loan trouble | Money in Politics | Scoop.it
AutoNation CEO Mike Jackson told CNBC on Wednesday he doesn't see signs of trouble in the auto loan market even though Wells Fargo said it would cap lending to borrowers with bad credit.
more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by 28ftp
Scoop.it!

The Campaign Cash That Can Kill the Open Internet

“The Internet Freedom Act” is a House bill intended to destroy newly instituted Net Neutrality rights. And of the bill's 31 co-sponsors, all but two of them received money from a major telecom or its lobby in 2014 alone.

The 29 co-sponsors received over $800,000 from AT&T, Verizon, Comcast, Time Warner Cable, and their lobby, the National Cable and Telecommunications Association (NCTA).

The legislation would invalidate rules instituted by the FCC last week that declared the Internet a public utility and disallowed telecoms from forcibly slowing or blocking Web traffic to competitors, or separating the Web into artificial, cable package-like tiers for lower-paying users.
more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by 28ftp
Scoop.it!

Chris Christie’s Exxon Settlement Is Bad for New Jersey

THE decision by the administration of Gov. Chris Christie to settle an environmental lawsuit against Exxon Mobil Corporation for roughly three cents on the dollar after more than a decade of litigation is an embarrassment to law enforcement and good government.

Even more troubling are the circumstances surrounding the decision, which recently came to light. As a judge deliberated whether to assess the $8.9 billion in damages New Jersey sought, the administration stepped in and agreed to take about $250 million and settle the case.
more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by 28ftp
Scoop.it!

Tom Udall’s Unlikely Alliance With the Chemical Industry

So environmental activists were stunned to learn that Mr. Udall’s political supporters now include the chemical industry, which has donated tens of thousands of dollars to his campaigns and sponsored a television ad that praised his leadership.

This unlikely alliance has been forged as Mr. Udall emerged as the chief Senate negotiator for Democrats on legislation that would fundamentally change the way the federal government evaluates the safety of more than 80,000 chemicals.

Some of Mr. Udall’s Democratic Senate colleagues and prominent environmentalists say he has helped the industry write new regulations in a way that protects profits more than public health.

Senator Barbara Boxer, Democrat of California, who until last year served as chairwoman of the committee that oversees the Environmental Protection Agency, has been the harshest critic of the negotiations between Mr. Udall and Senator David Vitter, Republican of Louisiana, notably over the language that would prevent states from setting their own, tougher standards.

“I’ve been around the Senate for a long time, but I have never before seen so much heavy-handed, big-spending lobbying on any issue,” Ms. Boxer said. “To me it looks like the chemical industry itself is writing this bill.”

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by 28ftp
Scoop.it!

Our Diverse America Deserves a More Representative Democracy | BillMoyers.com

Our Diverse America Deserves a More Representative Democracy | BillMoyers.com | Money in Politics | Scoop.it
One way to shift the balance of power is to amplify the voices of small donors in our system. Small-donor matching programs and other public funding systems like those in Maine, Arizona, Connecticut and New York City have been shown to increase participation, diversify the donor pool, and help more candidates of color run for office. At a federal level, the national Government by the People Act would increase the power of small contributions that ordinary citizens can afford to give by matching low-dollar donations with limited public funds. A recent Demos/US PIRG study of the 2014 midterms, The Money Chase, showed that if the Government by the People Act had been in place, a diverse group of credible candidates who lacked access to large donors but had grassroots financial support would have been better equipped to compete against their big money-backed opponents, and one (a Latina from California’s Central Valley) would have significantly outraised her opponent.
more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by 28ftp
Scoop.it!

Jeb Bush Is Taking Foreign Policy Advice From These Influence Peddlers

Clients of the Bush advisers were likely pleased by the ideas the pre-candidate laid out in his “big” foreign policy speech last month. He said he would support a rise in defense spending, increased bombing of the Islamic State and the continuation of National Security Agency spying programs.

Multiple companies whose boards include Bush campaign advisers stand to benefit from greater defense spending and more overseas bombing, particularly in the Middle East.
more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by 28ftp
Scoop.it!

Awash in cash, Bush asks donors not to give more than $1 million – for now

The perceived need to put limits in place for contributions, even if only for a few months, underscores the extraordinary role that elite financiers play in political fundraising, which increasingly centers on super PACs able to collect unlimited sums from individuals and corporations. The move reflects the sensitive challenge facing candidates who want to tap into those resources­ without relinquishing their claims of independence.
more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by 28ftp
Scoop.it!

End Big Money’s Chokehold on Democracy. Amend the Constitution.

End Big Money’s Chokehold on Democracy. Amend the Constitution. | Money in Politics | Scoop.it

Robert Weissman, Public Citizen 

 

[...]

Even if the movement for an amendment does not prevail, the energy around the effort is helping carry forward advocacy around disclosure, small donor financing and other election reform measures. This demonstrated and sustained grassroots demand for an amendment is the best means to nudge the Supreme Court – when someday its composition has changed – to overturn Citizens United and other harmful campaign spending decisions.

[...]

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by 28ftp
Scoop.it!

Online Payday Lender Pumped Dark Money Into Effort To Beat Back Regulation

In 2012, at the height of the payday loan industry’s lobbying campaign to push back the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, Online Consumers Network contributed $100,000 each to American Action Network, a nonprofit closely connected to House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio), and YG Network, a nonprofit linked to then-House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-Va.). Both of these dark money groups spent millions on the 2012 election without disclosing their donors. The contributions were uncovered in a tax return filed by Online Consumers Network.
more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by 28ftp
Scoop.it!

Many Buyers for Santander’s Subprime Loan Bundle

Santander has always made loans to borrowers with very tarnished credit. But the lender has usually financed those loans through private deals or held them on its books, instead of tapping the public market, according to a person briefed on the matter.

The latest bond deal was the first time that it has publicly sold securities backed by auto loans with such low credit quality since the financial crisis. The timing of the deal was driven by two factors: investor demand and a desire by Santander to free up more capital.
more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by 28ftp
Scoop.it!

End the Ethanol Rip-Off

End the Ethanol Rip-Off | Money in Politics | Scoop.it

Motorists thus incurred about $83 billion — roughly $10 billion annually — in additional fuel costs over and above what they would have paid for gasoline alone.

The United States now has about 212 million licensed drivers. That means that the ethanol tax is soaking the average driver for an additional $47 per year in excess fuel costs.

In the last session of Congress, 169 members of the House of Representatives sent a letter to Gina McCarthy, the administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency, urging her to reduce the amount of ethanol blended into gasoline supplies because the mandates could cause “economic and environmental harm.” Nothing came of it.

The push to end the ethanol tax has continued with the new Congress. Three senators — Dianne Feinstein, a Democrat from California, along with two Republicans, Patrick J. Toomey from Pennsylvania and Jeff Flake from Arizona — have introduced legislation to repeal the ethanol mandate. Their bill is supported by three dozen groups, ranging from industry groups like the American Petroleum Institute and the National Marine Manufacturers Association to environmental organizations like the Clean Air Task Force and Friends of the Earth.

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by 28ftp
Scoop.it!

Can the Left and Right Unite to End Corporate Rule? An Interview with Ralph Nader and Daniel McCarthy

Can the Left and Right Unite to End Corporate Rule? An Interview with Ralph Nader and Daniel McCarthy | Money in Politics | Scoop.it
van Gelder: I’d like to go through a few of the 25 proposals from Unstoppable, and ask you, Daniel, whether you agree with Ralph that these are proposals conservatives support. The first one is audit the Department of Defense.

McCarthy: Oh yes, very much so! [laughter] The Department of Defense is a government bureaucracy, and just like any government bureaucracy, it has to be held accountable. It has to be efficient and effective in terms of what is good for the American people and what is good for a genuinely limited foreign policy, not a kind of open-ended ideological foreign policy trying to transform the world.

Nader: And it’s completely out of control! The budget is $800 billion, and often they don’t know where to find the spare parts for the Air Force, or what happened to billions in Iraq. That’s what happens when it’s not audited.

Liberalism and conservatism, in various ways, have been hijacked by corporatism.
van Gelder: So how do you account for the fact that this audit hasn’t happened, given that people on both sides of the aisle would like to see it happen?

McCarthy: Well, the military-industrial complex has a pretty smart strategy. They divided up the manufacturing of armaments into different congressional districts. If the average congressman realizes he has a factory or some other interest within his district, he’s going to be responsive to that interest rather than to the public interest and to the national interest. So you’ve got a lot of money gaming the system and a kind of archipelago of military-industrial outposts that actually wield tremendous influence in Congress.

There’s a lot less money on the side of libertarians and conservatives, and progressives and liberals, who want to restrict the Pentagon.
more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by 28ftp
Scoop.it!

Washington revolving door speeds up as Obama officials head for lobbying jobs

Washington revolving door speeds up as Obama officials head for lobbying jobs | Money in Politics | Scoop.it
As the 2016 election looms, the former White House press secretary Jay Carney has joined the corporate exodus, despite the president’s stated policy

The revolving door has worked for David Plouffe, the Uber senior vice-president of policy and strategy formerly known as Barack Obama’s campaign manager. Photograph: Yonhap/Reuters
more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by 28ftp
Scoop.it!

Wells Fargo puts ceiling on subprime auto loans

Wells Fargo puts ceiling on subprime auto loans | Money in Politics | Scoop.it
Wells Fargo, one of the largest subprime car lenders, is pulling back from that roaring market, a move that is being felt throughout the broader auto industry.

The giant San Francisco bank, known for its stagecoach logo and its steady profits, has been at the center of the boom in making loans to people with tarnished credit scores. Wall Street, meanwhile, has been bundling and selling such loans as securities to investors, reaping big profits while allowing millions of financially troubled borrowers to buy cars.

But now, amid signs that the market is overheating, Wells Fargo has imposed a cap for the first time on the amount of loans it will extend to subprime borrowers.

The bank is limiting the dollar volume of its subprime auto originations to 10 percent of its overall auto loan originations, which last year totaled $29.9 billion, bank executives said.
more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by 28ftp
Scoop.it!

Netanyahu Speaks, Money Talks | BillMoyers.com

But Sheldon Adelson was not only sitting in the House gallery on Tuesday because of the strings he pulls here in the United States. He is also the Daddy Warbucks of Israel and Benjamin Netanyahu is yet another of his beneficiaries – not to mention an ideological soulmate. Although campaign finance reform laws are much more strict in Israel than here in the United States, Adelson’s wealth has bought him what the historian and journalist Gershom Gorenberg calls “uniquely pernicious” influence.
more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by 28ftp
Scoop.it!

Christie’s Office Drove Exxon Settlement, Ex-Official Says

Christie’s Office Drove Exxon Settlement, Ex-Official Says | Money in Politics | Scoop.it
For more than a decade, the New Jersey attorney general’s office conducted a hard-fought legal battle to hold Exxon Mobil Corporation responsible for decades of environmental contamination in northern New Jersey.

But when the news came that the state had reached a deal to settle its $8.9 billion claim for about $250 million, the driving force behind the settlement was not the attorney general’s office — it was Gov. Chris Christie’s chief counsel, Christopher S. Porrino, two people familiar with the negotiations said.

One of those people, Bradley M. Campbell, was the commissioner of New Jersey’s Department of Environmental Protection in 2004 when the lawsuits against Exxon were filed. Mr. Campbell, in an Op-Ed article appearing in The New York Times on Thursday, wrote that “even more troubling” than the decision to settle the lawsuit were “the circumstances surrounding the decision.”

Continue reading the main story
RELATED IN OPINION

Op-Ed Contributor: Chris Christie’s Exxon Settlement Is Bad for New JerseyMARCH 4, 2015
He goes on to say that former colleagues of his in the state government told him that Mr. Porrino “inserted himself into the case, elbowed aside the attorney general and career employees who had developed and prosecuted the litigation, and cut the deal favorable to Exxon.”
more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by 28ftp
Scoop.it!

The Religious Right's Crusade for More Money in Politics

A new report by Common Cause highlights a web of large, well-funded conservative religious organizations that have joined forces with Republican political operatives to tear down laws that protect our democracy from special interest influence.

For example, over the past two decades, the National Right to Life Committee, the Christian Coalition, the National Organization for Marriage, Focus on the Family and many of its affiliated state organizations and individuals have filed more than 70 lawsuits challenging campaign contribution limits, transparency laws and bans on corporate election spending.

Meanwhile, just since 2010, the National Right to Life Committee and the National Organization for Marriage, along with their tax-exempt "social welfare" affiliates and PACs, have dumped more than $11.6 million into federal elections. At the same time, Karl Rove's Crossroads GPS contributed more than $4.8 million to the National Right to Life Committee in 2010 and 2012.
more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by 28ftp
Scoop.it!

Harry Reid Secured Subsidies for Aides’ Donors

Corporate donors to a green energy nonprofit operated by Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid’s (D., Nev.) former staffers and a current campaign operative have received billions of dollars in federal loan guarantees and grant money as a result of Reid’s advocacy.

Fulcrum Bioenergy began contributing to the Clean Energy Project (CEP) in 2013. One year later, the Nevada Democrat steered tens of millions of dollars in federal grant money to the California biofuel company.

Fulcrum is one of at least nine corporate donors to the Clean Energy Project (CEP) that have secured federal financing for themselves or a client due in part to Reid’s behind-the-scenes advocacy—activity that watchdogs warn could be construed as unethical.
more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by 28ftp
Scoop.it!

I Was Alabama’s Top Judge. I’m Ashamed by What I Had to Do to Get There.

I Was Alabama’s Top Judge. I’m Ashamed by What I Had to Do to Get There. | Money in Politics | Scoop.it
How do we convince Americans that justice isn’t for sale—when in 39 states, it is?
more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by 28ftp
Scoop.it!

Inside the PAC Republicans Fear Most

Inside the PAC Republicans Fear Most | Money in Politics | Scoop.it
February 25, 2015

 

Republicans generally scoff at Tom Steyer and other big-money Democrats' efforts to swing elections against them. When it comes, however, to one group—a group that marshals millions of small-dollar donors against their candidates—they don't hide their concern.

"The power that ActBlue has is very real, and that is something that is quickly coming to the realization of not just us but members of Congress," Tom Newhouse, the National Republican Congressional Committee's digital director, said at a recent panel. "When we talk to large gatherings of some of our most hotly contested seats, these members get up and say, 'My opponent raised $800,000 from ActBlue. What are we doing about this?"

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by 28ftp
Scoop.it!

The Inside Story Of How Citizens United Has Changed Washington Lawmaking

The Inside Story Of How Citizens United Has Changed Washington Lawmaking | Money in Politics | Scoop.it
When Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy cast the deciding vote to gut a century of campaign finance law, he assured the public that the unlimited corporate spending he was ushering in would “not give rise to corruption or the appearance of corruption.” Because those authorized to give and spend unlimited amounts were legally required to remain independent of the politicians themselves, Kennedy reasoned, there was no cause for concern.

Just five years later, in a development that may be surprising only to Justice Kennedy, the Supreme Court’s 2010 decision is reshaping how, how much and to whom money flows in Washington.
more...
No comment yet.