Tuesday, February 7, 2023

Play

Bill to expand tax credits draws on children's health data, Alaskans file petition opposing giant grocery merger, and a revised Colorado water plan prioritizes conservation.

Play

President Biden is set to give the State of the Union address, House Speaker Kevin McCarthy calls the national debt limit the United States' greatest threat, and Kamala Harris announces new pledges to offer more economic stability in Central America.

Play

Is bird flu, inflation or price gouging to blame for astronomical egg prices? Pregnancy can be life-changing or life-ending depending on where you live, and nine tribal schools are transforming their outdoor spaces into community gathering areas.

Political Conduits: Pouring Millions Into Wisconsin Elections

Play

Monday, September 23, 2013   

MADISON, Wis. - The use of political conduits - check-bundling operations that combine donations from a number of people and send a single contribution to a candidate - is growing in Wisconsin politics. There is no limit on how much a conduit can pass along to a candidate.

Mike McCabe of the nonpartisan Wisconsin Democracy Campaign warned of dangers in this practice.

"It's a way of really effectively laundering special-interest campaign money and removing the stain of special-interest influence," McCabe explained.

In the last election cycle, conduits poured $3.7 million into campaigns. Ten years ago, conduit contributions accounted for less than $1 million. McCabe pointed to additional advantages for those trying to influence the outcome of elections, as well.

"There's the lack of disclosure, but there's also the unlimited donations. You put those two things together, and it's really a tool that special-interest groups are growing more fond of all the time," McCabe said.

It is easier for candidates to hide money coming from conduits, because instead of showing up as one big contribution on campaign finance reports, they show up as smaller individual donations.

McCabe said both parties do it.

"The Republicans have a distinct advantage overall in conduit contributions, so more money is flowing to the Republican side," he said, "but if you look at the single biggest conduit of all, it happens to be one that favors Democrats."

According to McCabe, what is at stake is the people's right to know who is pouring money into elections.

"It's really that combination: the sheer volume of money that flows through this pipeline, and the other problem of how hard it is for the public to get a grasp on who's supplying the money. It's really a lethal combination," McCabe warned.


get more stories like this via email

Michigan environmental activists have begun to focus on environmental justice issues in low-income communities that bear the brunt of industrial pollution and political indifference. (Adobe Stock)

Environment

By Tom Perkins for Planet Detroit.Broadcast version by Mark Richardson for Michigan News Connection with support from the Solutions Journalism Network…


Environment

By Jared Brey for Governing.Broadcast version by Deborah Van Fleet for Missouri News Service reporting for the Solutions Journalism Network-Public New…

Social Issues

South Dakota is once again locked in a debate over a bill concerning transgender youth. It seeks to ban gender-affirming care, with supporters …


Voters in Pittsburgh-area districts 32, 34 and 35 will head to the polls Tuesday to fill three vacancies in the Pennsylvania House of Representatives. (MoiraM/AdobeStock)

Social Issues

While the Pennsylvania House is still out of session and won't resume until late February, the public and advocacy groups are voicing their concerns…

Social Issues

Better health and educational outcomes are being touted as the potential benefits as Minnesota lawmakers discuss whether to provide free school meals …

Sixty schools piloted College Board's new AP African American Studies course, which is set to appear in over 200 schools starting in the 2024-2025 school year. (Adobe Stock)

Social Issues

CORRECTION: YouthTruth surveyed more than 28,000 high school seniors from the class of 2022 and the class of 2019 in 19 states, including New York…

Social Issues

For more than two decades, a workforce development program in El Paso has invested in the economically disadvantaged to help them attain the …

Health and Wellness

Nebraska's long-term care facilities face staffing shortages and other factors that could lead to more closures if state funding isn't increased…

 

Phone: 303.448.9105 Toll Free: 888.891.9416 Fax: 208.247.1830 Your trusted member- and audience-supported news source since 1996 Copyright 2021