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Arizona Legislature Curbs Info on ‘Dark Money’ With Sleight of Hand

May 08, 2016 | Arizona Daily Star | News
Over the objections of several Democrats, the House voted 31-25 to give final approval to HB 2296. The main provision would curb the ability of both the Secretary of State’s Office and the Citizens Clean Elections Commission to demand that certain “social welfare” groups disclose information on their donors. If all that sounds familiar, it should: The same provisions were in SB 1516 signed into law earlier this year by Gov. Doug Ducey. But the wording of that bill means it cannot take effect until sometime later this summer. HB 2296 would become law no earlier. But in a bit of legislative sleight of hand, it contains language making it effective, retroactively, later this month.

Women’s Rising Influence in Politics, Tinted Green

May 07, 2016 | The New York Times | News
Women are bankrolling political campaigns this year more than ever, driven by their rising rank in the workplace, boosts in women’s wealth, and networks set up to gather their donations and bolster their influence.

Your Dark Money FAQ

May 06, 2016 | dark money watch | Margaret Sessa-Hawkins

Money and politics is one of the hottest issues in the 2016 election. Candidates across the political spectrum — from Donald Trump to Bernie Sanders — are talking about it. If you think it’s difficult to figure out how the campaign finance system really works, you are not alone. To make things easier, here are … Continue reading “Your Dark Money FAQ”

Welcome to Dark Money Watch, A Project of MapLight

May 06, 2016 | dark money watch | Daniel Newman

As the 2016 election approaches, voters can expect to see a barrage of fundraising appeals, TV ads, robocalls and mailers that have become normalized as political routine. In recent election cycles following influential court rulings, more and more political spending is generated by groups that do not disclose their donors. Known as “dark money,” these … Continue reading “Welcome to Dark Money Watch, A Project of MapLight”

New Nonprofit Tied to Stealthy Circle of Dark Money Groups

May 06, 2016 | Center for Responsive Politics | Viveca Novak and Anna Massoglia

Leading the pushback from the outside against President Obama’s attempt to bring the Supreme Court back up to its full complement of nine justices, the Judicial Crisis Network claims to have spent $4 million on a TV, radio and digital campaign attacking nominee Merrick Garland and arguing that the next president should fill the vacancy. Additional … Continue reading “New Nonprofit Tied to Stealthy Circle of Dark Money Groups”

LLC Gifts Are Making up a Bigger Share of Super PACs’ Fundraising Hauls

May 06, 2016 | Center for Responsive Politics | Will Tucker

A super PAC supporting a candidate to replace departing Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) has received far more than just $10,000 from limited liability companies this cycle, a Center for Responsive Politics analysis of LLC contributions shows. Nearly one-fifth of Reform Washington‘s funds this cycle have come from entities with “LLC” appended to their names. Only a … Continue reading “LLC Gifts Are Making up a Bigger Share of Super PACs’ Fundraising Hauls”

Should Political Nonprofits Disclose More Frequently?

May 06, 2016 | TaxAnalysts.Com | Blog
Not only do many politically active nonprofits operate with dark money from undisclosed donors, but they carry out their work behind another shield, some say: the time lag before having to report their spending to the IRS.

Clinton Fundraising Leaves Little for State Parties

May 02, 2016 | Politico | News
In the days before Hillary Clinton launched an unprecedented big-money fundraising vehicle with state parties last summer, she vowed “to rebuild our party from the ground up,” proclaiming “when our state parties are strong, we win. That’s what will happen." But less than 1 percent of the $61 million raised by that effort has stayed in the state parties’ coffers, according to a POLITICO analysis of the latest Federal Election Commission filings.

Cruz’s Faltering Campaign Shows the Risks of Depending on a Few Wealthy Donors

May 02, 2016 | The LA Times | News
Ted Cruz, in his outsider’s bid for the White House, has depended heavily on the largesse of just three wealthy donors to establish credibility and stay afloat amid a chaotic nominating process that killed off most of his rivals. Now, at perhaps the most desperate moment in his quest to win the Republican nomination, Cruz is learning the perils of relying on strong-willed magnates who carry their own agendas and have demanded an unprecedented level of control in how their money is spent.
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