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Moody’s has most employees leaving through revolving door

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Moody's credit rating service -- one of the major credit rating agencies that was cited as a contributor to the 2008 financial meltdown -- has more employees go through the revolving door to work at companies they used to rate than any other credit rating agency, according to new Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) filings required under the Dodd-Frank financial law.

Eighty-two Moody's employees have moved on to jobs at big banks such as Credit Suisse, Morgan Stanley, and Bank of America over the past five years, according to the filings, which are available here. This is nearly four times ...

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Nonprofit groups target super committee with billboard ads, don’t disclose donors

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With so many vying for the attention of the 12 lawmakers charged with cutting up to $1.5 trillion from the nation's deficit, some groups have turned to plastering their messages to the "super committee" on billboards. 

In New York City's Times Square and in Washington, D.C., the billboards tell the Joint Select Committee on Deficit Reduction that “Congress should cut spending like a Thanksgiving turkey” and “Before we cut turkeys, Congress must cut $1.5 trillion in spending,” referring to the deadline set for the super committee. The ads are part of a campaign called Bankrupting ...

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What happens in Vegas helps determine the Republican presidential nominee

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Texas Gov. Rick Perry may be slipping in the polls, but his fundraising prowess is keeping him among those to watch at Tuesday night's Republican debate in Las Vegas.

Perry raised $17 million during the third quarter, which ended Sept. 30, beating frontrunners Mitt Romney and Herman Cain. Romney, the former governor of Massachussetts, raised $14 million, while Cain, the former CEO of Godfather's Pizza and Chairman of the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City, raked in $2.8 million.

Those three will take the stage Tuesday night during a debate sponsored by CNN and the Western Republican ...

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SEC ‘revolving door’ data online but useful information redacted

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The revolving door has been swinging rapidly for employees leaving the Securities and Exchange Commission to work in the private sector to represent big companies in actions brought by the agency. But while the commission gathers post-employment information from former employees, it does not make this information readily available.

Even when these records of the SEC's so-called “revolving door” are requested through the Freedom of Information Act, they tend to be incomplete and heavily redacted, according to a report by the Project on Government Oversight.

If an employee leaves the SEC and within two years and decides to work ...

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Comments on Dodd-Frank’s position limits rule came from petroleum marketing, airline industries

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A handful of groups--including some backed by petroleum marketing firms, airlines and unions--were responsible for the great majority of some 13,000 comment letters sent to the Commodity Futures Trading Commission about a single proposed regulation mandated by Dodd-Frank, according to an analysis by the Sunlight Foundation.

The CFTC is expected to issue a final rule, which limits how many futures contracts an investor is allowed to hold in any one security, on Sept. 22, though the agency has yet to confirm that date. The position limits rule received one of the highest number of public comments in the agency ...

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Sunlight Live to cover first-ever Tea Party hosted debate in Florida

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Republican presidential candidates will face off before some of their fiscally conservative, libertarian Tea Party allies on Monday night during a debate in Florida sponsored by the Tea Party Express and CNN. It's the first time the Tea Party has hosted a presidential debate.

GOP candidates Michele Bachmann, Ron Paul, Rick Perry and Herman Cain, whose messages often align with the goals of the Tea Party, might find themselves in good company Monday evening.

The Sunlight Foundation will stream the debate and cover it live at http://sunlightlive.com to add context, campaign finance and lobbying information, and real-time ...

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Sunlight Live to cover the Republican showdown in Iowa

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In the fight to determine who will face President Obama in the 2012 election, Republican candidates will square off again this Thursday in Ames, Iowa, days before the straw poll. It will be the first debate since the latest campaign finance reports have been filed, showing Mitt Romney with a substantial financial lead over his competitors.

Although FOX News, the cable channel sponsoring and airing the debate, has not officially announced which candidates will take the stage on Thursday, we expect to see:

  • Michele Bachmann, U.S. representative from Minnesota
  • Herman Cain, former executive of Godfather's Pizza and former ...

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Sunlight Live to cover Tuesday’s Senate hearing on finance reform

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Lawmakers on the Senate's Banking Committee will discuss Tuesday how to reform the housing market, focusing on smaller banks' access to the secondary mortgage market. This market includes mortgage-backed securities, the complex financial arrangements that helped topple the U.S. Economy a few years ago.

Sunlight Live will provide a video stream of the 10 a.m. hearing and blog during the event to provide more context to this discussion, including insights into the financial connections that could influences the senators on the committee and the witnesses testifying on the topic. Some of the listed witnesses have made campaign ...

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A primer for tonight’s presidential address on Afghanistan

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President Obama will unveil his plan tonight for pulling out the roughly 30,000 troops sent to Afghanistan during the December 2009 troop surge. While all kinds of factors go into foreign policy decisions, especially when it comes to putting troops in harm's way, it's worth noting that the Afghanistan operation has been the subject of intensive lobbying, has been prone to fraud, waste and abuse in federal contracting and raises issues of government accountability. 

While Obama will cover a number of issues raised by the ongoing war in Afghanistan, the following topics most likely will not make ...

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Sunlight Live to cover Senate hearing on Clean Air Act Wednesday

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Lawmakers on the Senate's Environment and Public Works committee will meet Wednesday, June 15, to hear from experts on public health as it relates to the longstanding Clean Air Act.

According to the Environmental Protection Agency, the Clean Air Act, passed in 1970, will have saved $2 trillion dollars by 2020 and 230,000 lives each year. But this spring, lawmakers in the House of Representatives attacked the law by passing a bill to keep the EPA from regulating green house gases. Similar legislation did not pass in the Senate.

The Sunlight Foundation will live blog during Wednesday's ...

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