Jonathan Allen, writing in The Hill, exposes some earmarks sponsored by Rep. Steve Chabot for institutions with connections to some of his closest political supporters (read: donors and fundraisers). Reading the story, I couldn't help but think how much it was like our own Exposing Earmarks effort that focused on H.R. 5647, the Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education appropriations bill--find the earmarks, tie them to a member of Congress, and then look into who's benefiting. First, what makes Allen's story in The Hill so interesting is that it rather perfectly illustrates one of the main ways in which earmarks are abused:Continue reading
The 2006 elections are shaping up to be the most troublesome kind for political practitioners: unpredictable. What makes me say that this early in the season is a new report from the Campaign Finance Institute, a non-profit research group in Washington that takes a rigorous academic look at the latest trends in political financing.
They’ve been looking at the latest FEC reports on spending in congressional races and found that in competitive districts – those relatively few spots on the map where the seat may be winnable by either party – challengers are raising ample sums to take on the incumbents, as are candidates from both parties in close districts with open seats.Continue reading