August 9, 2012

Who Did Pete Hoekstra Lobby For? We May Never Know

Last night, former congressman Pete Hoekstra won the Michigan GOP Senate primary, securing his spot as the party’s nominee. He will be competing the Senate seat this November. In between his stint as a congressman and this current race, Hoekstra raked in nearly half a million dollars as “a senior adviser with Dickstein Shapiro LLP,
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August 8, 2012

Another Chamber of Commerce Member Is Caught Bribing Foreign Governments

In late 2010, the foreign-funded U.S. Chamber of Commerce, perhaps Washington’s most powerful corporate front group, unleashed a lobbying blitz to weaken the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA). The FCPA is designed to punish U.S.-based corporations that bribe foreign officials abroad. Earlier this year, a subsidiary of Wal-Mart — which is a Chamber member —
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August 7, 2012

Education Profiteers Gather In New York To Cheer Privatization Of American Schools

Reuters has the scoop on an event that took place earlier this week where nearly a hundred education profiteers — ranging from executives at testing companies to private equity moguls eager to invest in education technology — met at a swanky Manhattan club to cheer on the privatization of the U.S. education system: The investors
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August 6, 2012

Michigan Representative Introduces Prison Privatization Bill, Top Donor Is Private Prison Exec

In Michigan, State Rep. Jon Bumstead (R) introduced a bill that would send the state back down the path of prison privatization. House Bill 1574 would re-open a private youth prison that was operated by GEO Group (then Wackenhut) that was shut down in 2005 and allow it to house adult inmates. The bill would
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August 3, 2012

Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse Calls For Divestment From Corporations That Funnel Dark Money Into Politics

As the campaign against the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) has shown, sometimes the best way to tackle corporate influence in our politics is to name and shame corporations that are secretly financing front groups to manipulate our democracy. Dozens of corporations have left ALEC thanks to this tactic. On a recent national call with
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August 3, 2012

What Gore Vidal Said About The Corrupting Influence Of Money In Our Politics

Earlier this week, celebrated author, playwright, and activist Gore Vidal passed away. “Mr Vidal was, at the end of his life, an Augustan figure who believed himself to be the last of a breed, and he was probably right,” editorialized the New York Times upon his death. In 2000, Vidal authored the foreword to Money
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August 1, 2012

Georgia Voters Of Both Parties Revolt Against Corruption

Imagine if lobbyists could give virtually anything they wanted to lawmakers, ranging from a gift basket of cookies to a Mercedes Benz. This isn’t some dark fairy tale. In Georgia, it’s reality. Lobbyists can give virtually whatever gift they want to lawmakers. But in recent month, a rowdy coalition of tea partiers and progressives have
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August 1, 2012

The Washington Post Won’t Tell Congress How Much Money Kaplan’s CEO Makes

Some Members of Congress are stepping up to increase oversight over the for-profit college industry, which is heavily subsidized by taxpayers but which continues to abuse our veterans and other students. As a part of this effort, Rep. Elijah Cummings (D-MD) sought to report about the salaries of top executives at these companies. Keep in
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