The Electoral-Industrial Complex: Fortunes Made by Consultants on Campaign Spending

By: Monday November 12, 2012 1:35 pm

When the information on just how lucrative our elections are for the ad placement agents and strategists who manage them, I suspect this anger will go through the roof. And it should, on both sides. If the arms race continues to bulk up, we may have to add “electoral” to the familiar line about the military-industrial complex.

 

The House in 2012: Dark Money Still Works at the District Level

By: Wednesday November 7, 2012 12:50 pm

The more important point is that dark money does work. It works in the House. SuperPACs and independent expenditure groups wasted historic amounts of money running into a demographic brick wall at the national level. Even at the statewide level, Democrats could withstand the attacks. But in the House, late money that poured into a discrete number of seats had a real impact. Winnable seats turned sour, even in places where Democrats did well.

Politicians in a SuperPAC World Won’t Be the Ones to Stop SuperPAC Spending

By: Thursday November 1, 2012 10:37 am

The new report that campaign spending in the 2012 cycle will reach $6 billion has come as depressing news to many despairing over the purchasing of our democracy. Some have held out hope that the sheer numbers will provide a wake-up call to all Americans that something must be done to take this democracy back. I think that’s highly unlikely.

Jeep Auto Workers Fear for Their Jobs After False Romney Ads in Ohio

By: Tuesday October 30, 2012 7:12 pm

Mitt Romney’s latest play for Ohio – which remains the touchstone of the entire election, desperate plays for Minnesota and Pennsylvania aside – apparently involves straight-up lying about the intentions of Chrysler to “build Jeeps in China,” to the extent that Jeep factory employees are calling their managers wondering if they still have a job.

Obama Ad About Big Bird Cannot Find One Prominent Wall Street Criminal Prosecuted By Administration

By: Tuesday October 9, 2012 7:10 am

There’s only one thing that sticks out to me about this ad, though the casual viewer probably won’t notice it. Let’s look at that litany of Wall Street “criminals” and “gluttons of greed,” which later get juxtaposed with Big Bird. You have Bernie Madoff, Ken Lay and Dennis Kozlowski. So two CEOs prosecuted and convicted by George W. Bush’s Justice Department, and Madoff, whose son turned him in before Obama took office, in December 2008, and who pleaded guilty.

SuperPACs More Effective Downballot Than in Presidential Races

By: Thursday September 27, 2012 8:15 am

Funny how campaign finance is coming back to bite the independent expenditure campaigns in the rear. But this only works when you have a free spending candidate on the other side. That’s usually not the case in downballot races, where resources are more constrained. A Democratic House candidate up against a SuperPAC onslaught won’t fare as well as a well-heeled Obama campaign.

MO-Sen: Akin Officially on the Ballot; McCaskill Immediately References Legitimate Rape Comments in New Ad

By: Wednesday September 26, 2012 9:45 am

Yesterday was the final day that Todd Akin could take himself off the Missouri Senate ballot. But I think the national Republicans who desperately wanted this to happen gave up on the idea long ago. Clearly Akin marches to his own beat, and wouldn’t be swayed even by the cutoff of funds. Some conservative movement members have slowly been inching their way back into the race, with Newt Gingrich campaigning with Akin this week, and Jim DeMint’s PAC likely to send him some money.

Anti-Union Ads in Chicago Paid for By Hedge Funds, Billionaires

By: Wednesday September 19, 2012 6:30 am

Apparently the above anti-union ad played non-stop on television in Chicago throughout the strike. It’s the product of Education Reform Now, a group that also sometimes goes by Democrats for Education Reform, depending on what pot of money they want to use. Formed in 2005, Education Reform Now has spent millions of dollars over the past few years, whether massaging public opinion or lobbying state legislatures or intervening in school board races.

Paul Ryan Puts Up Ads for His House Election; A Sign of Trouble?

By: Tuesday September 11, 2012 3:56 pm

Republican Vice Presidential nominee Paul Ryan will begin running ads in the race for his House district in Wisconsin, a potential sign of uneasiness about his re-election, which will probably be interpreted more broadly as a lack of confidence in Mitt Romney’s chances in the Presidential election.

Akin, Staying in MO-Sen Race, Appeals to Missourians for Forgiveness in New TV Ad

By: Tuesday August 21, 2012 7:00 am

When you put out an ad that has to state clearly, up front, that “rape is an evil act,” I’d say that should be the end of your political career, but in this case, Todd Akin is clearly making a play for hanging in there in Missouri, with just hours before he needs to make a decision on whether to withdraw.

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