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Crossroads GPS gets declared a nonprofit five years after applying, meaning that its donor list can remain private. Read more»

Republican candidates wagered that big bucks from outside political groups could overcome their own fundraising shortfalls ahead of the 2014 midterm elections. They were right. Last Tuesday night, Republicans won control of the U.S. Senate for the first time in eight years. Read more»

The IRS and Treasury Department announced proposed guidelines clarifying the definition of political activities for social welfare nonprofits Tuesday afternoon, a move that could restrict the spending of the dark money groups that dumped more than $254 million of anonymous money into the 2012 elections. Read more»

On its 2012 tax return, GOP strategist Karl Rove’s Crossroads GPS justified its status as a tax-exempt social welfare group in part by citing its grants of $35 million to other similarly aligned nonprofits. The return specified that the grants would be used for social welfare purposes, “and not for political expenditures, consistent with the organization’s tax-exempt mission.” But that’s not what happened. Read more»

Libertarian Party gubernatorial candidate Robert Sarvis, center, stands with two other of the party's candidates for office in Virginia, Keegan Sturdivant, left, and Laura Delhomme.

Two days after Virginia voters narrowly elected Democratic gubernatorial candidate Terry McAuliffe over Republican Ken Cuccinelli, Libertarian National Committee Executive Director Wes Benedict declared "mission accomplished." Read more»

ProPublica’s job is to report the news rather than to make news ourselves, but sometimes we find an article of ours to be itself a subject of public debate. Last week was such a time, when two articles we had published back in December and January became the subject of significant attention in light of the uproar over IRS oversight of the process for granting tax exemption to so-called “social welfare” groups. Read more»

There are still only two important things in politics, as the 19th century’s own Karl Rove, a Republican fundraiser named Mark Hanna, once said: “The first is money, and I can’t remember the second.” For Americans who want to make sure that their government isn’t for sale to the highest bidder, that first item should be transparency. Read more»

Harold Simmons, owner of Contran Corp. and Valhi, Inc.

Republican mega-donor Harold Simmons considers President Barack Obama to be "the most dangerous man in America," and in a bid to unseat him, fueled conservative political groups with tens of millions of dollars. Read more»

On Tuesday, the Supreme Court agreed to hear a case challenging caps on overall campaign contributions. The new case could become the most important since the 2010 Citizens United decision, which opened the way for record levels of election spending last year. Read more»

The sad truth is that this nonsense is introduced into the media ecosystem by right-wing reality-denying sources, and it almost always makes its way into the mainstream media—often going unchallenged. Read more» 1

Crossroads GPS, the brainchild of GOP strategist Karl Rove that has spent tens of millions from secret donors on elections, told the IRS in its 2010 application that its efforts would focus on education, policy-making and research.

In a confidential 2010 filing, Crossroads GPS — the dark money group that spent more than $70 million from anonymous donors on the 2012 election — told the Internal Revenue Service that its efforts would focus on public education, research and shaping legislation and policy. Read more»

What’s that smell? A whole lotta conservative memes rotting on the trash pile of history – that’s what. Read more»

Rove.

If Karl Rove was an NFL coach and not a political strategist, he would probably be looking for a new job about now. Organizations co-founded by the GOP’s most effective fundraiser spent more than $175 million only to see President Barack Obama win a second term and Democrats actually gain seats in the U.S. Senate. Read more»

A new TV ad in Florida harkens back to the notorious “death panel” falsehood. It wrongly claims Medicare benefits could be “rationed” and seniors denied treatment by the new health care law. In fact, the law specifically forbids rationing or restriction of benefits. Read more»

The totals spent are based on data collected by Kantar Media's Campaign Media Analysis Group, or CMAG. The totals reflect estimates of expenditures on broadcast TV ads and differ from totals reported to the Federal Election Commission.

Two conservative nonprofits have spent more on TV ads to influence the presidential race so far than all other super PACs put together, new spending estimates show. Read more»

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