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Before Citizens United, there would be no Senate race where two outside groups would account for nearly one out of every five dollars spent.
If you hear someone laughing the next time you fill your car with gasoline, look around and see if you can't spot an oil executive on his way to the bank.
The 2011 merger of Comcast and NBC-Universal created one of the largest media conglomerates in American history, which critics warn could limit the variety of voices heard by the public and threaten the internet’s role as a forum for free exchange of information.
The Center for Responsive Politics revealed Thursday that corporate campaign spending has skyrocketed since the Supreme Court’s Citizens United v. the Federal Election Commission decision in January 2010. The report comes at the same time as the first major state-level challenge to the controversial ruling.
The Obama years have so far been a predictable boom-time for the army of anti-regulation lobbyists paid by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. The Center for Responsive Politics reports that the Chamber spent $276 million over the past two years lobbying against, among other things, health care reform, environmental protections and Wall Street regulations. The Chamber is the number-one spender on lobbying this year as in years past, but it is outdoing itself, setting records in its own outrageous largess. In just the last three months of 2010, the Chamber spent $50.9 million on lobbying at the federal, state and grassroots levels. That's a step down from last year, when in the last financial quarter as health and financial industry reform were being discussed in DC, the Chamber spent $79 million from October through December to defeat or water-down Democratic legislation.
In an interview with a Colorado Springs radio talk show host Tuesday, former lieutenant governor and Republican candidate for U.S. Senate Jane Norton said she has never worked as a lobbyist. She was responding to callers looking to feel out her conservative credentials. "On the lobbyist thing, I've not been a lobbyist," she said.
Back in July, a software company named Smartronix landed an $18 million contract to build a Web site where taxpayers could easily track billions in federal stimulus money. It was just another part of the Obama administration’s ongoing effort to bring transparency to stimulus spending, we were told. But it seems the drive for transparency doesn’t cover the contract itself.
As the nation’s economy mires in recession, most Americans are anticipating lower earnings by making do with less — but not those who call Capitol Hill home.