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December 21, 2012 | By Carol J. Williams
Muscle-flexing over the archipelago of disputed islands in East Asian seas featured prominently in the political campaigns that have brought forth new leaders for China, Japan and South Korea. But don't expect an end to the posturing and provocations just because the political season is over, Asia watchers say. China claims that a handful of rocks in the East China Sea is a part of its ancient heritage. Known as the Diaoyus, they are a strategic component of China's mission to project an image of power throughout the region.
December 12, 2012 | By Matea Gold, Los Angeles Times
WASHINGTON - The push by states to force politically active nonprofits to disclose their financial backers ratcheted up Wednesday as New York's attorney general proposed tough rules that could require many such tax-exempt groups to publicly report their political budgets and donors. The regulations, which Atty. Gen. Eric T. Schneiderman plans to issue in spring after a public comment period, could affect some of the biggest outside groups that engage in federal political campaigns, including Americans for Prosperity, the League of Conservation Voters, the National Rifle Assn.
November 5, 2012 | By Carla Hall
Backers of Proposition 32 have relentlessly promoted the fiction that the measure would stop special-interest money from flooding California political campaigns because it would stop unions and corporations from deducting money from members' and employees' paychecks for political funds. That won't make special-interest money disappear. All that will do is cripple unions' ability to raise money for political purposes, and leave corporations essentially unfettered to spend what they want influencing elections.
November 2, 2012 | By Chris Megerian, Los Angeles Times
SACRAMENTO — The Arizona nonprofit at the center of a controversy over secret campaign donors Thursday appealed a judge's order to turn over records to California's campaign finance watchdog. The Fair Political Practices Commission is seeking the records to determine whether the nonprofit is improperly shielding the identities of its contributors. The nonprofit, Americans for Responsible Leadership, gave $11 million to fight Gov. Jerry Brown's tax hike plan and support a separate measure to curb unions' political influence.
November 1, 2012 | By Chris Megerian, Los Angeles Times
SACRAMENTO - A state judge Wednesday ordered an Arizona nonprofit to hand over a wide range of records involving its $11-million donation to California political campaigns, a victory for the state's campaign finance watchdog. California's Fair Political Practices Commission is trying to unmask the donors behind the Arizona group. The case is being watched as a test of state regulations intended to prevent campaign contributors from anonymously routing money through nonprofits. "This is a moment of truth for our campaign disclosure laws," said Derek Cressman of Common Cause, an activist group that filed a complaint against the Arizona organization.
October 25, 2012 | By Robert C. Bordone and Heather Scheiwe Kulp
Reading the newspapers recently, we've been struck by how similar the presidential debate commentary has been to commentary about "Monday Night Football. " After the matchups in this year's "debate season," political pundits criticized President Obama's "prevent defense" and "two-yard runs down the middle. " They talked about how Mitt Romney "spiked the football. " And football wasn't the only sports metaphor invoked in the coverage. On Tuesday, "CBS This Morning's" ticker about the previous night's debate read "Final Face-Off," while ABC's "Good Morning America" heralded the "Final Debate Duel.
October 20, 2012 | By Michael J. Mishak, Los Angeles Times
SACRAMENTO - The wealthy conservatives behind a November ballot measure that would constrain organized labor's ability to raise political money say their initiative, Proposition 32, would help change the balance of power in California's Democrat-dominated Capitol. But the experiences of some states that have passed similar measures suggest that's not always the case. Union opponents have scored their biggest victories in "right-to-work" states, where labor is typically weaker than in California because workers are not required to become members or pay union fees.
October 19, 2012 | By Chris Megerian, Los Angeles Times
SACRAMENTO - An $11-million donation to a California campaign fund could become a test of whether secret political donors can be forced to reveal themselves. Seizing on a new state regulation, activists have asked authorities to unmask those behind the large donation, made this week by an Arizona nonprofit to a conservative group campaigning on two California ballot measures. Implemented in May, the regulation requires that campaign donors moving money through such nonprofits be identified.
October 9, 2012 | By Maeve Reston
DES MOINES -- Mitt Romney's spokesman rejected as "a bunch of nonsense" a Politico story that said chief strategist Stuart Stevens has scaled back his campaign duties after what the publication described as a "family intervention" in which Ann Romney and her son Tagg urged the Republican presidential candidate to pursue a different course. "It doesn't make any sense to any of us who are on the campaign," Romney spokesman Kevin Madden told reporters traveling on the campaign plane from Virginia to Iowa on Tuesday.
September 26, 2012 | By Kim Geiger
Voters in Virginia are the latest to get a taste of an increasingly popular type of political attack: the anonymous text message. "Tim Kaine calls for radical new tax on all Americans," reads a text message attacking the Democratic candidate in the hotly contested Virginia Senate race. Aside from being false -- Politifact recently debunked a similar claim by Kaine's Republican opponent, George Allen -- the message came from an email address that used portions of Kaine's name, giving the appearance that the message might have come from Kaine himself.
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