“The Obama administration may have raised the profile of transparency, but sometimes by making it worse,” he said. “Instead of taking real action, it has focused efforts on prosecuting whistle-blowers, embracing more money in our political system and permitting political review of requests under the Freedom of Information Act.”—Sunlight’s policy director, John Wonderlich, speaks to Bloomberg about the Obama administration’s record on transparency.
“The notion of dark money was first introduced in a 2010 report from the Sunlight Foundation, a nonprofit group that calls for greater transparency in government. Originally, the term referred to funds of undisclosed origin being used to influence elections.”—
We couldn’t resist posting this quote from National Review, which cites our coinage of the term “dark money” — a term that references, as NR points out, the anonymous political spending that floods our elections each cycle.
Sadly, the article also goes on to defend the right of anonymous financial influence in politics and the various tactics both the left and the right utilize to keep undisclosed flowing into the system. To which we would say: Mmmm… no.
“I probably wouldn’t recommend them to take a contribution from Ray Rice, but it takes a LOT for a candidate to turn down money :)”—A Republican fundraiser, responding to Buzzfeed’s question as to whether the flood of bad news would lead him to advise political candidates against taking checks from the NFL and its related political entities. (via politicalpartytime)
On Aug. 5, the Federal Communications Commission announced the bulk release of the comments from its largest-ever public comment collection. We’ve spent the last three weeks cleaning and preparing the data and leveraging our experience in machine learning and natural language processing to try and make sense of the hundreds-of-thousands of comments in the docket.
Some key findings:
We estimate that less than 1 percent of comments were clearly opposed to net neutrality.
At least 60 percent of comments submitted were form letters written by organized campaigns (484,692 comments); while these make up the majority of comments, this is actually a lower percentage than is common for high-volume regulatory dockets.
At least 200 comments came from law firms, on behalf of themselves or their clients.
Although President Barack Obama’s administration touts its support of an open and transparent government, there’s been a glaring exception: opening up political fundraisers to the pool of White House reporters who trail the president. So far, in 2014, President Obama has headlined 41 political fundraisers, according to data from Party Time. Of those parties, the press has been shut out of almost half – 19, to be exact.
Hello, Internet. Here is a visualization that shows how much Comcast and Time Warner interests contributed to key members of the House Judiciary Committee, which today held a hearing to discuss the corporate giants’ planned merger. Hover over the member to find out how much ComcastTWC money they reaped in recent election cycles.
It’s a little finicky in Tumblr, but we’re very aware of your burning passion for interactive click-things, so we wanted to do right by you. Enjoy!