money in politics

Virginia anti-corruption movement faces down corporate backlash

July 19, 2018 - A campaign to encourage politicians to reject contributions from electric utility monopolies aims to recast Virginia politics-as-usual as unethical. Though the pledge effort is meeting opposition from those who benefit under the current conflict-ridden system, it's still going strong — and has spread beyond the state.

New challenges for the disputed Atlantic Coast Pipeline

May 24, 2018 - A key permit voided. An environmental justice complaint. Accusations of fraud. In recent weeks, Dominion and Duke Energy's proposed pipeline to carry fracked gas from West Virginia at least as far south as North Carolina has faced several setbacks. But the developers plan on moving ahead with the $6.5 billion project anyway — and they're investing in creating a political climate favorable to those plans.

Secret-money courts group accused of libel in Arkansas

May 18, 2018 - An Arkansas judge blocked an election ad by the conservative Judicial Crisis Network attacking a state Supreme Court judge, citing libel concerns. If the group, which spends millions to influence state and federal courts, appeals to the U.S. Supreme Court, its spending would present an ethical dilemma for Justice Neil Gorsuch.

Will Congress close the loophole that enabled Facebook's Russian ad scandal?

April 25, 2018 - The first peer-reviewed study of ads bought on Facebook to influence the 2016 election is renewing calls for Congress to pass the Honest Ads Act, which would close disclosure loopholes for political ads on social media. The stalled bill is opposed by groups including Americans for Prosperity and an anti-regulatory think tank with a connection to Senate leader Mitch McConnell.

INSTITUTE INDEX: Breaking the gun lobby's hold on state politics

February 27, 2018 - While the NRA's contributions to Congress members have been in the spotlight since the Florida school massacre, the group also spends big at the state level — and it's not the only pro-gun group doing so. But the gun lobby doesn't always get what it wants, and pro-gun control interests have dramatically stepped up spending in recent years.