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The News Without Transparency: Reports highlight lack of information available on 501(c)4s


Recent reporting and analysis by ProPublica and the Sunlight Foundation Reporting Group have brought a certain dark money group, the Government Integrity Fund, into the light.

The Government Integrity Fund is registered as a 501(c)4, a type of nonprofit permitted to run issue ads to influence the outcome of elections without disclosing the names its donors to the Federal Election Commission.

Thanks to a long-anticipated ruling by the Federal Communications Commission in August, broadcast stations are now required to make information about political ad buys available online. That FCC decision, along with efforts by the Sunlight Foundation’s Political Ad Sleuth and ProPublica’s Free the Files projects to aggregate the more than 30,000 filings on the FCC database so far, have helped to shed more light on the money these groups are spending and the people and interest groups behind the influence.

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