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Senate Democrats display a poster of the projected increase in campaign spending during the 2012 election cycle as they announce legislation in response to the Supreme Court's Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission decision on March 21, 2012. (Win McNamee/Getty Images)
(Aug. 20, 2012) With the political conventions and the November election around the corner, we are taking a time-out to assess the state of campaign finance. As we reported last week, dark money nonprofits are outspending all super PACs combined in the presidential campaign thus far. How did we get here? A look at the landmark Citizens United decision and its impact on the 2012 campaign follows.
Suggest your best campaign finance reading and resources with #MuckReads on Twitter or in the comments below, and we’ll update this guide with the best.
A Tangled Web: Who’s Making Money From All This Campaign Spending? Al Shaw, Kim Barker and Justin Elliott, ProPublica
How Some Nonprofit Groups Funnel Dark Money Into Campaigns, Kim Barker and Al Shaw, ProPublica
(August 21, 2012) A ProPublica investigation shows that many 501(c)(4) nonprofits active in the 2010 election spent millions of dollars on campaigns, sometimes reporting less political spending to the Internal Revenue Service than they did to election officials. Some groups listed here – including several with long histories and well-established social welfare missions – put only a small portion of their resources into politics and reported accurately.