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NEWS
April 15, 2011 | By Melanie Mason
The Colbert Report has become a modern day Schoolhouse Rock, and Thursday night's lesson was all about PACs. Late last month, Stephen Colbert announced his strategy to become a "political playa in 2012" -- form a political action committee, like fellow conservative TV politi-pundits Sarah Palin and Mike Huckabee. ColbertPAC collected more than 68,000 emails, Colbert said last night. But Comedy Central's corporate parent Viacom, fearing that the PAC violates campaign finance restrictions, asked Colbert to shut the would-be PAC down.
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NATIONAL
March 4, 2014 | By Maeve Reston
Hillary Rodham Clinton will not announce for months whether she will run for president, but as she arrived in California for events this week the machinery of a campaign was cranking into gear around her. The Ready for Hillary "super PAC," created to encourage her candidacy, will launch a website this week that could serve as the framework for an eventual campaign to organize supporters across the 50 states. The leaders of another super PAC, Priorities USA Action, have been meeting on the West Coast with a select group of donors, seeking six- and seven-figure pledges (and in some cases checks)
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NEWS
February 20, 2012 | By Matea Gold and Melanie Mason
Republican presidential hopeful Mitt Romney and a "super PAC" working on his behalf churned through more than twice as much money than the two campaigns raised in January, underscoring the financial challenge the former Massachusetts governor faces as he tries to fend off rivals Newt Gingrich and Rick Santorum. In a month in which Romney lost two out of the four GOP primary contests, his campaign raced through $18.7 million while raising just $6.5 million, according to campaign finance records filed Monday with the Federal Election Commission.
NEWS
February 27, 2014 | By Michael A. Memoli
WASHINGTON - Vice President Joe Biden urged fellow Democrats to stop obsessing about the role that well-funded outside groups are expected to play in the midterm election, saying it will be enough for their party to lay out an affirmative case on the issues. Biden, in a speech to state Democratic Party leaders Thursday, said he had never seen public sentiments align with Democrats'  positions on major issues - raising the minimum wage, immigration reform and marriage equality - as they do today.
NEWS
February 24, 2012 | By Melanie Mason
A TV commercial released this week by the pro-Mitt Romney "super PAC" looks much like an ad released about four years ago by the official Romney campaign, raising suspicions among watchdog groups of improper coordination between the super PAC and the GOP presidential candidate's current campaign. The commercial, which is running in Arizona and Michigan in advance of Tuesday's primaries, tells the tale of Romney's former Bain Capital colleague Robert Gay, whose then-teenage daughter had run away in New York City for three days.
NEWS
February 20, 2012 | By Melanie Mason
Restore Our Future, the independent group supporting Mitt Romney's presidential bid, raised $6.6 million last month, ending January with $16.3 million in the bank, according to filings submitted Monday to the Federal Election Commission. The group also spent almost $14 million in the first month of nominating contests. In all, the "super PAC" -- which can take unlimited donations from individuals and corporations -- has raised $36.8 million for the election cycle. This month's haul marks an acceleration in the group's fundraising pace, but unlike in months past, did not collect any million-dollar checks.
NEWS
February 15, 2012 | By Alana Semuels
Super PACs have upended the presidential campaign by airing attack ads ad nauseum in Florida, South Carolina and Michigan, among other early-voting states. Some have included material so inaccurate that one professor is embarking on a campaign to stop them from airing. Starting Thursday, Kathleen Hall Jamieson at the University of Pennsylvania's Annenberg School of Communication wants television viewers to contact their local TV stations and urge them not to air inaccurate Super PAC ads. "People are very frustrated by the level of dirty attacks by Super PACs,” said Jamieson, director of the Annenberg Public Policy Center at the university.
NEWS
October 9, 2013 | By Seema Mehta
A super PAC that is pushing Hillary Rodham Clinton to run for president in 2016 is planning to hold a fundraiser in Los Angeles in November, days before she comes to the area to accept a set of awards. “Ready for Hillary” is to hold its event on Nov. 6 at the Exchange in downtown Los Angeles, with the goal of drawing 500 people and raising at least $12,000, said Michael Trujillo, an unpaid senior advisor who worked on Clinton's unsuccessful White House bid in 2008. The goal, he said, is the largest pro-Clinton small-donor fundraising effort for the super PAC, which is forbidden by law from coordinating with a candidate.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
May 15, 2013 | By Kate Linthicum and Seema Mehta
A new Spanish-language television ad attacking Los Angeles mayoral candidate Wendy Greuel for being registered as a Republican during the Pete Wilson years is drawing push-back from her campaign. The 30-second commercial, which was produced by a "super PAC" backing Greuel's opponent in next week's election, draws links between Greuel and Wilson, the former California governor who pushed a 1994 initiative to block immigrants in the country illegally from accessing state social services.  The ad splices together photos of Greuel and Wilson and says: "During the anti-immigrant era of Pete Wilson, Wendy Greuel was a Republican.
NEWS
May 17, 2012 | By Morgan Little
WASHINGTON -- A pending plan by top GOP strategists would bring back a familiar face from the 2008 presidential campaign, the Rev. Jeremiah Wright, in a massive $10-million campaign directed at drawing attention to connections between President Obama and the controversial reverend. “The world is about to see Jeremiah Wright and understand his influence on Barack Obama for the first time in a big, attention-arresting way,” the proposal pledges, according to documents obtained by the New York Times . The plan, titled “The Defeat of Barack Hussein Obama: The Ricketts Plan to End His Spending for Good,”   is one of many being presented to Joe Ricketts, an outspoken supporter of conservative causes and founder of TD Ameritrade, who is more than willing to put his money where his political views are. Ricketts is currently the main financer of the “super PAC” Ending Spending Action Fund.
NEWS
January 7, 2014 | By Seema Mehta
Ready for Hillary, a "super PAC" that is urging Hillary Rodham Clinton to run for president in 2016, announced Tuesday that it raised more than $4 million last year. "Thanks to the groundswell of enthusiasm for Hillary's potential run and the steadfast commitment of our supporters, we have exceeded our goals and are ahead of schedule in raising the funds necessary to build a grass-roots army that can be activated the moment Hillary makes a decision," Adam Parkhomenko, executive director of the group, said in a statement.
NEWS
October 9, 2013 | By Seema Mehta
A super PAC that is pushing Hillary Rodham Clinton to run for president in 2016 is planning to hold a fundraiser in Los Angeles in November, days before she comes to the area to accept a set of awards. “Ready for Hillary” is to hold its event on Nov. 6 at the Exchange in downtown Los Angeles, with the goal of drawing 500 people and raising at least $12,000, said Michael Trujillo, an unpaid senior advisor who worked on Clinton's unsuccessful White House bid in 2008. The goal, he said, is the largest pro-Clinton small-donor fundraising effort for the super PAC, which is forbidden by law from coordinating with a candidate.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
May 15, 2013 | By Kate Linthicum and Seema Mehta
A new Spanish-language television ad attacking Los Angeles mayoral candidate Wendy Greuel for being registered as a Republican during the Pete Wilson years is drawing push-back from her campaign. The 30-second commercial, which was produced by a "super PAC" backing Greuel's opponent in next week's election, draws links between Greuel and Wilson, the former California governor who pushed a 1994 initiative to block immigrants in the country illegally from accessing state social services.  The ad splices together photos of Greuel and Wilson and says: "During the anti-immigrant era of Pete Wilson, Wendy Greuel was a Republican.
NEWS
May 10, 2013 | By Maeve Reston
Los Angeles mayoral candidate Eric Garcetti said Friday that Wendy Greuel's dwindling campaign treasury would only bolster his argument that her campaign is being sustained by the independent spending on her behalf. With 11 days left before the May 21 runoff election, City Councilman Garcetti's latest campaign finance report shows that he has 10 times as much cash-on-hand as his rival , who reported $275,000 in her bank account and debts of nearly $535,000. “She's now broke,” Garcetti said after appearing at a Mexican Mother's Day event at San Antonio Winery in Lincoln Heights with telenovela star Jaime Camil, whose surprise appearance brought gasps from the women assembled for the luncheon.
OPINION
April 30, 2013
Re "'Super PACs' bury limits on spending," April 27 Spending by "super PACs" is a direct result of unrealistically low contribution limits. It takes a lot of money to run for mayor of Los Angeles. The only way to stop PACs is to lift the limits on direct contributions. Then the money would at least be traceable and the candidates accountable. The PACs are running campaigns and crafting messages beyond the candidates' control. They are the direct result of misguided reforms that have simply driven the money underground.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 26, 2013 | By David Zahniser and Maloy Moore
Strict limits on campaign contributions imposed by voters nearly three decades ago are crumbling in the Los Angeles mayor's race, with big donors using loosely regulated "super PACs" to help candidates like never before in a citywide election, a Times analysis has found. Of the $17.5 million collected so far to support mayoral hopefuls Wendy Greuel and Eric Garcetti, roughly one-third - a record $6.1 million - has gone into independent political action committees that can accept contributions of any size.
NEWS
January 14, 2012 | By Kim Geiger
The group behind “King of Bain,” a 28-minute video attacking Mitt Romney's career at Bain Capital, has called on Romney to help identify errors in the film. Winning our Future, a “super PAC” backing Newt Gingrich, has used the film as the basis for attack ads airing on television in South Carolina, where the GOP primary campaign is in full gear. The film has been reviewed by a number of fact-checking organizations, which have concluded that it contains inaccuracies and distortions.
NEWS
January 24, 2012 | By Tom Hamburger
With contributions coming in, allies of Newt Gingrich have just purchased $6 million in advertising in Florida, to further build up the former House speaker after his victory in South Carolina. The first ad labels Romney as "the inventor of government run healthcare" suggesting he is allied with President Obama. The ad is paid for by Winning Our Future, a "super PAC" aligned with Gingrich. The organization has received $10 million in donations from one couple, Sheldon and Miriam Adelson, who have backed Gingrich since they met him in 1995 when legislation important to Israel passed the House.
ENTERTAINMENT
March 18, 2013 | By Patrick Kevin Day
Stephen Colbert likes to tread the line of fiction and nonfiction with his conservative pundit character on "The Colbert Report," but he's putting the fictional part aside to help out his sister, who's running for Congress in the siblings' home state of South Carolina. Colbert's sister Elizabeth Colbert Busch, who works in business development for Clemson University, is running as a Democrat for the House of Representatives seat vacated by Republican Tim Scott when he moved to the U.S. Senate to fill the seat of retiring member Jim DeMint.
ENTERTAINMENT
December 11, 2012 | By Meredith Blake
Is Stephen Colbert going to join the Senate? Probably not, but that won't stop him from trying. The news last Thursday that Sen. Jim DeMint (R-S.C.) would be retiring from public service sparked immediate speculation about the possibility that everyone's favorite fake pundit, quasi-presidential candidate and South Carolina native son would run to replace him. Within hours, someone launched a “Colbert for Senate” Twitter account, and the host was named the top choice to replace DeMint in a survey conducted over the weekend by Public Policy Polling -- never mind that there's virtually no chance that Gov. Nikki Haley, an actual Republican, would appoint a fake one like Colbert to the vacant seat.
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