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Democratic super PACs gain ground, still trail GOP

By KENNETH P. VOGEL and ROBIN BRAVENDER

A network of Democratic outside groups boosting President Barack Obama and his congressional allies picked up its fundraising this year, but still lags woefully behind Republican outside groups that have already begun an attack-ad binge.

The groups, four super PACs and a pair of linked non-profit groups, raised more in the first three months of this year – $7.9 million – than they raised in the last half of last year, though the main pro-Obama super PAC, Priorities USA Action, has yet to release its March fundraising figures.

Still, the running 2012 tally for the Democratic groups – which comes from Federal Election Commission filings and voluntary disclosures released Friday evening – is dwarfed by the $21.5 million raised in the first two months of the year alone by the two main GOP super PACs. Those groups are the Karl Rove-linked American Crossroads and the pro-Mitt Romney Restore Our Future.

Those groups had $34.1 million in the bank as of their most recent reports, while the Democratic ones showed about $8.3 million on hand after Friday’s reports.

Democrats have used the threat of a massive negative ad barrage to try to get their own donors to write bigger checks. And, in a joint statement, the groups that disclosed their cash hauls Friday sounded that tone. “Republicans and their outside groups are going to spend an unprecedented amount of money to advance their right-wing ideology,” said the groups — Majority PAC, which boosts Democratic Senate candidates, House Majority PAC, which boosts the party’s candidates for the House of Representatives, and American Bridge 21st Century, which has fashioned itself as an opposition research arm for Democratic outside groups.

The super PAC imbalance has been a subject of concern for Democrats up to and including Obama. Toward the end of the 2010 midterms, he began dialing back his years-long opposition to big outside money in politics and, in February, he blessed his cabinet secretaries and top campaign aides to appear at fundraisers for the Democratic super PACs.

The results of that reversal are not yet evident in the reports filed Friday, or in earlier reports from Priorities USA Action, which listed big contributions primarily from the most active Democratic givers.

Labor unions, long reliable funders of Democratic outside efforts, provided the lion’s share of the funding disclosed in the recent reports. They gave a total of $1.5 million to the three super PACs that filed with the FEC Friday.

The Committee On Letter Carriers through its PAC gave $500,000 to House Majority PAC, while the Service Employees International Union gave $20,000 to the House super PAC and another $100,000 to American Bridge.

The biggest individual donor revealed Friday was hedge fund billionaire James H. Simons, who cut a $1 million check to Majority PAC at the end of last month. That matches him with controversial comedian Bill Maher, who gave $1 million to Priorities USA Action in February, as the biggest Democratic super PAC donors so far this year.

Other major donors revealed Friday include Anne G. Earhart, an heiress to the Getty Oil fortune, who gave $400,000 to American Bridge, and Donald Sussman, a hedge fund billionaire and husband of Rep. Chellie Pingree (D-Maine) who donated $250,000 to Majority PAC.

Liberal interest groups also came to the table for the super PACs, including the PAC of the trial lawyer group American Association for Justice, which gave $100,000 to Majority PAC, and the Marijuana Policy Project, which gave $2,500 to House Majority PAC.

Not disclosed were the donors who gave $516,000 to American Bridge 21st Century Foundation, the non-profit arm of the oppo super PAC. It’s registered under a section of the tax code – 501(c)4 – that allows it to shield its donors, as is a group linked to Priorities USA Action.

The groups have transferred cash to their super PAC counterparts, including a $90,000 transfer between the American Bridge groups revealed Friday. But Priorities USA Action told POLITICO it would end the practice, seemingly out of deference to Obama, who continues to assail secret money as having a deleterious effect on American democracy.

The groups have begun airing ads of their own in recent weeks.

Majority PAC has spent about $55,000 this month on ads to boost Democratic incumbent Sen. Claire McCaskill of Missouri. The super PAC also ran television ads for Ben Nelson last year, before he announced he wouldn’t seek re-election.

And this month, Priorities USA Action unveiled an ad linking Romney to Big Oil and high gas prices.

The ad asserts that “Big oil executives have pledged two hundred million to help” Romney, and accuses Romney of pledging “to protect their record profits — and their billions in special tax breaks too.”

House Majority PAC spent $1 million in the first quarter of 2012, including $688,000 on advertisements opposing Iowa Republican Rep. Tom Latham, who’s running against incumbent Democratic Rep. Leonard Boswell, and against Rob Cornilles, who lost to Suzanne Bonamici earlier this year in a special election to replace disgraced former Oregon Rep. David Wu.

 

Posted to: News Politico Politics

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The Supreme Court

From Bush v Gore to Citizens United the right wing extremist Supreme Court has done great damage to America. The logical result to allowing billionaires to control our elections is a candidate like Romney.....an out of touch millionaire who only represents the 1%.

three points - will you dodge all three

President Obama said Citizens United overturned a century of settled law. Didn't the Harvard law school graduate know the genesis of banning corporate donations to political campaigns came from US Senator Benjamin Tillman (D-SC)? Tillman was a devout racist and pushed the Tillman Act to prevent "evil" GOP corporations from making campaign donations to black candidates. Are you supporting the racist basis for banning corporate campaign donations?

Don't forget the USSC decisions for Bush v Gore. The 7-2 decision demanded the FL SC to explain why they had violated the FL election law with demanding a state wide recount. The 5-4 decision was to declare that the Electoral College date was in stone.

Candidate Obama IS a millionaire. A 1%'r!

Yet another Democrat Barack Obama broken promise...

...Obama promised to use public financing for his 2008 campaign then quickly broke that promise. Now Obama has broken his promise to not use Super PAC funds. Call them what you will, broken promises or lies, there's nothing new at all here from Barack Obama.

Obama broke numerous 2007 campaign promises

How about this-There are no republican americans or democrat americans, we are all just americans and I will pull all americans together and unite us. (not exact words).

Reality check-Campaigner in chief does all he can to divide americans pit us against each other, class warfare, anything to excite his entitlement voter base and to keep from talking about the economy or his record.

Another-I will have a fully transparent administration if elected. No secrets.

Reality-solyndra, gm union bosses, fast and furious

Another-I will cut the deficit in half during my first 4 years.

Reality-5 trillion+ increased debt. Need I go on? Of course liberals will have many excuses for this. Mostly it is Bushes fault is what I hear from the grifter.

where is the outrage? where is the petition?

Why doesn't President Obama demand that Internet donors input their CVN (credit card verification number) (that three digit number on the back of your credit card)? That CVN matches the given address with the record listed with the credit company. That CVN matches the name with the record listed with the credit company.

President Obama's Internet donors don't have to verify who they are or if they are from the USA (foreign donations are illegal).

Where is the demand that President Obama demand CVN for Internet donations? Even candidate Romney requires the donor to be REAL and from the USA by entering their CVN.

Do the Democrat super PACs require the donor to enter a CVN? Why not?

What are they HIDING????

Re:

They don't care where the money comes,whether it's foreign or domestic,legal or illegal as long as someone is dumb enough to send them money. No questions asked money sounds like money laundering,you donate to non-profit,get a receipt & voila,you can deduct that on taxes hence scam the IRS.

Just wonder when

De Facto ppResident Daddy George Soros will come to the rescue of his puppet you so much love?

No Soros

Actually Soros has not contributed big money. Do a little research before you post.

is that like the research about

CO2 levels doubled
a million people have died from guns in the last ...
Citizens United
GOP hates science
GOP hates women

Still, why don't you demand that President Obama's campaign demand the 3-4 digit security code on the back of the credit card when accepting donations on the Internet? That code authenticates who the person is and where the person is.

Don't you want President Obama to be able to verify his campaign only accepts LEGAL donations?

Like those things

aren't true?

only a

fool would believe they are

Romney's billionaires

Most of Romney's money comes from billionaires, he has little popular support even in the Republican Party. Most of Obama's money has come thru small individual contributions, but in order to compete with Karl Rove's billionaires, Obama has had to go the SuperPAC route. Good for Obama. You have to fight fire with fire.

Republicans will need funds galore to fight their wars on:

women,
Hispanics,
African Americans,
alternate life styles
the poor,
Unions,
suppress voting rights,
give massive tax breaks to robber barons,
while gutting safety nets for the middle class,

all this with a presidential candidate that nobody seems to like, good luck with that.

did you read directly from the talking points

War on:
women - with the example of having a woman candidate for the GOP nomination - Bachman, and another as the most feared person by liberals - Palin.
Hispanics - like Senator Rubio who is prime candidate for VP
African Americans - like my candidate Herman Cain
alternate life styles - have the courage to say what you mean
the poor - MOST conservative members of the GOP are NOT rich
Unions - don't you mean PUBLIC SECTOR unions that are paid by you and I (if we lived in another state)
suppress voting rights - by protecting the votes made by all by demanding votes are by the real person
give massive tax breaks to robber barons - like GE or GM or Hollywood (been to a movie lately)
while gutting safety nets for the middle class - like what?

"my candidate Herman Cain"....

One needs to be utterly devoid of the gag reflex to describe Mr. Cain as "presidential",

Everyone who isn't a Fox News watching dimwit has had it up to here with Tax Cuts for the Rich, endless wars, budget cuts and corporate welfare. Momentum has shifted drastically away from the politicians who serve the wealthiest one percent and their agenda to a populist movement that is shaping the narrative in America and resonating with millions upon millions of working class people who are fed up with a broken system that robs the poor to pay the rich.

aside from the lack of description you didn't include

Maybe you could explain what is "presidential".

Do you realize that your candidate President Obama is a ONE PERCENTER? He is a Harvard law school graduate who has known nothing but opportunity in his life. How many of your friends go to Harvard law or have home in Hawaii? Do you really think that President Obama has close ties with US common person? Do you think he can name three people he considers friends that he has had over for "beer" that were NOT rich?

I don't want a person who FAKES being a 99%, I want someone who can inspire all (at least those who listen) to know that America was the best, IS the best, and will be the best. I want someone who has ideas and plans that encourage growth from the PRIVATE sector out.

We don't want

or need a cheerleader much less a cynical etch-a-scketch candidate who will apply the same economic insanity that wrecked our country under Bush. We won't support politicians that demonize public workers, women, immigrants and labor. I'm not thrilled with Obama but voting Republican would be like sticking a pencil in your eye -- there just isn't any sound reason to inflict harm on yourself short of stupidity.

nice bumper sticker, but it is upside down and on the front

Can you name the policy or policies of Bush that collapsed the economy? Of course you cannot because it was many reasons that can be blamed on lots of people.
Bush was president and "the buck stops here" but that is about responsibility NOT about cause.
The economy went bad because of the perfect storm: people getting mortgages they could barely afford, Greenspan raising the Fed rate; mandate of ethanol; rising fuel prices; rising utilities that pushed people to NOT being able to afford the mortgages they were paying.
Public workers are paid by you and I and when they demand more pay/benefits then YOU AND I have to pay more.
It is not immigrants but ILLEGAL immigrants.

Trust but verify. If you cannot explain the HOW, then it ain't real.

It doesn't take a genius

to know that borrowing to support two unnecessary wars while cutting taxes for the wealthiest and deregulating finance wrecked our economy. The process didn't start with Bush, it started with Reagan, and was helped along by Clinton, but Cheney and Bush went all out spending more and taxing less until the deficit was broken along with the job market, the housing market, our infrastructure and plundered retirements. The Bush administration was the most corrupt, inept, and short-sighted in our history. Corruption and an all-powerful Executive continue under Obama but going back to the poison of Republican economic idiocy would be national suicide.

dont let the

the spending facts get in your way http://www.usgovernmentspending.com/federal_deficit_chart.html

They keep forgetting

that women are the majority.

PACS not benefiting from class warfare talk

The more Obama continues with his class warfare rhetoric, the more his PACs will lag in fundraising. .....Its the economy stupid! It was Clinton's campaign theme. Obama's blown his first three years in an afterthought on hope and change. He's even relaxed the requirements on his credit card reform law from 2009.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/04/12/credit-card-fees_n_1421170.html

After his health care is struck down, his first 3 years will have nothing to show for it - nothing but a sour economy. If he's really for the entitlement class, and the custodial class then maybe they have some spare cash they can throw at his democratic PACS. They won't get it from people with money who supposedly "aren't paying their fair share."

The class war is over

In the last 30 years 80% of the increase in after tax income went to the top 5%. The class war is over. The rich won.

Well...

If you cant beat em join em....I am working on it.

Obama has plenty of rich donors

The grifter in chief will get his secret money from all the beneficiaries of his lame policies like Government Motors and their union friends, Jeff Imelt of GE who sent all his factories overseas to avoid tax. Wait isn't he supposed to be the grifters job czar bringing jobs back to America? Obama is the sorriest president since Carter. Probably in America's 235 year history. The campaigner in chief will be out of the white house next Januuary. He can devote his life to criticizing republicans like Carter does. That is a good place for him. At least he won't be destroying America.

Article Source

This one-sided, biased article pretending to be news was sponsored by the Democrat National Committee. Politico is just a front for the DNC. Expect more of the same.

The truth is hard for you to handle

The article is not one sided. It was the right wing Opus Dei justices on the Supreme Court that voted in Citizens United. And the result? A Republican nominee funded solely by billionaires that even the Republicans don't like. Talk about the chickens coming home to roost....

are you saying you prefer the racist over opus dei?

Since almost everyone agrees that the basis for banning corporate donations to political campaigns came from the racist Tillman Act, it is a wonder that anyone would want to turn back the clock to Jim Crowe laws and other racist based laws.

Are you saying that all Catholics are bad for office and appointments? The Catholic church accepts as its own Opus Dei. Would President Kennedy and Senator Kennedy be against Catholics? Would VP Biden be against Catholics? They are well known Catholics.

Don't forget that President Obama IS a ONE PERCENTER!

The most liberal GOP candidate is still more conservative than President Obama. Do you seriously think we haven't learned the lesson from 2008 that protesting by staying home doesn't work?

They are all One Percenters

That's the problem. At least Obama is from the more rational part of the 1% and gets that without the rest of us the economy would collapse. Citizens United sells our government to the highest bidder and has to be overturned. If big money is "speech" and corporations are "people" than 99% don't count and have no voice or representation because we don't have billions to spend buying elections.

The Stench Of Rationalization

Now I've heard everything. The "1%" is evil. Except YOUR "1%" (on the Left) are good because the mean well? Oh, AND they're on YOUR side.

Too much money in politics is either good or bad. Most people (on BOTH sides) believe it's bad. You don't get to exempt some of the greedy rich just because they're Democrats. That's a double-standard.

Rationlaization or Lesser of Evils?

The stench is of corruption either way but making the least harmful choice is rational. Unless we win electoral reform and eliminate the need for ridiculous sums of money we will not get better candidates or real representation.

Sadly

The contest over how many billions spent is what decides our country's leadership. How many million can you contribute to be heard? Why should wealth have more say than anything else. That isn't in the Constitution. How can we expect to have anyone truly represented but the 1% when elections, and our government are sold to the highest bidder? Something has to change. Getting back a representative republic is going to require all of our efforts.

This is why we need publically funded campaigns.

Every candidate gets the same amount of money to campaign with from the government so it is fair and even.

It's just not fair that the Republicans can raise more money than the democrats can. Just because they can get more people to donate doesn't mean that they should have the louder voice.

Obama will still win because no matter what the Republicans say about him I will vote for him automatically because I'm working class and he takes care of me and stands up to the corporations.

Obama sure has you fooled

Submitted by Brothers Keeper at 8:20 pm.
I will vote for him automatically because I'm working class and he takes care of me and stands up to the corporations.

While Obama takes all the dirty money from the same corporations you falsely believe he protects you from, you do the dirty work of voting for the grifter. Doesn't make a lot of sense does it? The campaigner in chief gets the best of both worlds. Dirty corp money and your vote. In the end you are still stuck in your same situation scratching your head and wondering what happened? You were fooled by the grifter again thats what happened.

Sorry I won't be fooled. To be fooled twice is embarrasing beyond belief. Bury your head in sand embarrasing. I will vote for the other guy.

I'm not fooled

and I wish there were better alternatives to vote for but neither am I fool enough to vote for Romney.

Fooled by?

"Dirty corp money and your vote."
Citizens United, of course, is squeaky clean. As is ALEC, and all those other sources who refuse to be identified.
If the GOP could manage to get it's collective head out from under women's skirts and stop telling doctors how and when to conduct sonograms or what medications they can prescribe they might manage to realize that you can't run a government by saying no to everything the other party proposes. "Playing doctor" is a kid's game!
As for voting automatically, all I've heard from the GOP candidates is that they are fixated on defeating President Obama, to the exclusion of what they are going to do IF they succed. The "Anyone but Obama" mantra doesn't run the country; it RUINS the country!

Chuck!

"I will vote for the other guy." Ahhhhh, more deep thought at the polls.

just not fair that the Republicans can raise more money

huh? obama raised nearly a billion dollars last round.. so obama will win just because you are voting for him? must be nice to have that kinda of power,, anyway , there will never be another republican president. why? the democrats have too many people dependent on the government dollars, 47% of wage earners do not have a federal tax liability, i.e. they get back mo money than they have withheld during the year, more people than ever are now on welfare,food stamps,ect ect, why in the world would these people vote republican?? we finally have hit the top of the slippery slope and we stepped right in it, and now we are falling on the wrong side of that slope, there is no going back,, democrat presidents forever now

?????

"and the pro-Mitt Romney Restore Our Future". Restore our Future? Excuse me, but is that even possible? Whoever dreamt that up is living in some kind of time warp.

Red Flag

has it right.
Those groups are the Karl Rove-linked American Crossroads (Anyone who has seen the movie "Crossroads" knows who waits there), and and the pro-Mitt Romney Restore Our Future, (It used to be "take our country back", until they got tired of hearing "How far back do they want to take it?").

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