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Will Harbaugh photos help U-M regent hopefuls?
University of Michigan board of regents candidates have photos of themselves with Jim Harbaugh on campaign websites and Facebook pages.        
-1 points by Detroit Free Press | Michigan Politics Political campaign Political science Candidate Political philosophy Ann Arbor Michigan Michigan Wolverines football
Are U-M regents candidates using Harbaugh to get elected?
University of Michigan board of regents candidates have photos of themselves with Jim Harbaugh on campaign websites and Facebook pages.        
-1 points by Detroit Free Press | Michigan Politics Political campaign Political science Candidate Political philosophy Ann Arbor Michigan Michigan Wolverines football
Are U-M regents candidates using Jim Harbaugh photos to get elected?
University of Michigan board of regents candidates have photos of themselves with Jim Harbaugh on campaign websites and Facebook pages.        
9 points by Detroit Free Press | Michigan Politics Political campaign Political science Candidate Political philosophy Ann Arbor Michigan Michigan Wolverines football
Jim Harbaugh? We're with him, Michigan regent candidates say
U-M board candidates use photos of Jim Harbaugh on campaign websites and Facebook pages.        
9 points by Detroit Free Press | Michigan Politics Political campaign Political science Candidate Political philosophy Ann Arbor Michigan Michigan Wolverines football
Candidates and U-M coach Jim Harbaugh: We're with him
U-M board candidates use photos of Jim Harbaugh on campaign websites and Facebook pages.        
-1 points by Detroit Free Press | Michigan Politics Political campaign Political science Candidate Political philosophy Ann Arbor Michigan Michigan Wolverines football
An unsung hero, she raised the cash for the convention
You don't know her name, but without Michelle Singer there might never have been a Democratic National Convention here. Or the bills might have gone unpaid, and the thousands of people at the convention might not have been able to live-stream or tweet the event.
278 points by The Philadelphia Inquirer | Democratic National Committee National Convention Political campaign Democratic National Convention
Meet the men plotting strategy for California's U.S. Senate candidates
Donald Trump's comments about Mexicans and immigrants, and his rise to be the Republican party's presidential nominee, might have thrown a wrench in Bill Carrick's plan to get an underdog elected to the U.S. Senate. California hasn't had an open Senate seat in two-and-a-half decades, and for the...
171 points by Los Angeles Times | Democratic Party Bill Clinton United States Senate California Dianne Feinstein Political campaign Republican Party Barack Obama
After working for Trump’s campaign, British data firm eyes new U.S. government contracts
Cambridge Analytica’s parent company is pitching its services to the Pentagon and other national security agencies.
1593 points by The Washington Post | Political campaign Federal government of the United States Government agency President of the United States Regulatory agency Political consulting Intelligence agency Vice President of the United States
Political Road Map: California campaign spending broke records in 2016 — expect more of the same in 2018
Baseball fans are cheering the arrival of spring training, the first chance to see what’s in store for the long season ahead. And there’s another big-money enterprise limbering up: California statewide political campaigns. Candidates and ballot measure supporters alike know that a strong message...
1 points by Los Angeles Times | Elections Referendum Initiative Election Voting system Political campaign Voting Democracy
Trump pick for ambassador to Israel has contentious Senate audition
David Friedman sought to assure skeptical senators that he can be fair-minded despite previous public statements doubting a Palestinian state and supporting Jewish home building in the West Bank.
16 points by The Washington Post | Israel Benjamin Netanyahu Political campaign West Bank President Jerusalem Democratic Party Shimon Peres
More students turn to GoFundMe to raise money for college costs
College isn't cheap, and more students are turning to GoFundMe online fundraising campaigns to raise money for college costs. In Illinois, about $2.6 million has been raised since 2014 from nearly 5,300 campaigns to assist with tuition, housing and other higher education expenses, according to ...
51 points by Chicago Tribune | University Education finance Education Student Debt Political campaign Higher education Want
Garcetti accuses Measure S campaign of 'dirty tricks'
Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti accused the backers of a controversial ballot measure of “dirty tricks” Wednesday after they used his image in a campaign message. “They are well aware I strongly oppose Measure S,” Garcetti said. “The Yes on S Campaign should cease and desist from any suggestion...
67 points by Los Angeles Times | Planning Los Angeles City council Mayor Municipality Mayor of Los Angeles California Real estate Political campaign
Trump faces renewed questions on Russia
President Trump on Feb. 15 faced renewed questions on whether his 2016 presidential campaign had contacts with Russian officials. Meanwhile, Trump’s nominee for labor secretary, Andrew Puzder, withdrew a day before his confirmation hearing.
545 points by The Washington Post | President of the United States Republic Positions of authority President Political campaign
Kremlin: Don’t believe media reports about contact with Trump campaign
The Kremlin on Wednesday denied claims that Russian intelligence officers were in contact with members of Donald Trump’s presidential campaign, calling the allegations “absolutely groundless.” “Let us not believe in what media say, for nowadays it is very difficult to tell actual news from fake ones,” Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said, according to the Russia...
1381 points by New York Post | Russia Diplomacy Donald Trump Moscow Kremlin Political campaign Diplomatic mission Moscow Kremlin
The slippery slope of exempting churches from campaign ban: Richard Schmalbeck (Opinion)
Churches, if freed from the ban on campaign participation, would be the only institutions in our society that could engage in political activity on a tax-deductible basis, writes Duke University law professor Richard Schmalbeck. Richard Schmalbeck is a law professor at Duke University.Duke University  DURHAM, North Carolina -- For more than 60 years, churches, along with all other charitable organizations, have been subject to an absolute ban on participation in "any political campaign on behalf of (or in opposition to) any candidate for public office." The Trump administration announced earlier this month its plans to introduce legislation that would reverse this rule as to churches -- a technically simple amendment to the Internal Revenue Code. This would have one arguably beneficial effect: It would free churches and their clergy to express the full range of their opinions on matters of public policy, even if those opinions might be seen as campaign participation. Unfortunately, giving churches the opportunity to participate in campaigns may well prove to be unhealthy for both the political process and for churches themselves. This is primarily because contributions to churches (and other charities) are deductible for federal and state income tax purposes. This means that churches, if freed from the ban on campaign participation, would be the only institutions in our society that could engage in political activity on a tax-deductible basis.  Should churches be permitted to endorse political candidates? Individuals can participate in campaigns, and contribute to parties, candidates and action committees, but they get no deduction for doing so. The same is true of businesses, labor unions, chambers of commerce -- really, it's true for everyone: Contributions of money or time to political causes are simply not deductible, period. It does not take a great leap of imagination to realize that if wealthy people and institutions can deduct the cost of their political activities, but only if those activities are funneled through a church, they will do precisely that. If for some reason they cannot find a cooperative church to be their mouthpiece, they can easily create one. While most charities must fill out an exhaustive application to the IRS for recognition of their exempt status, churches alone are not subject to that requirement. They enjoy an automatic presumption of exempt status. Churches are also favored by the provisions of the Church Audit Procedure Act, which prohibits random audits by the IRS, and provides special procedural protections for churches if the IRS decides that it has good cause to conduct a church audit. These special provisions are well-motivated: Congress has wanted to protect churches from unnecessary entanglement with the government.  But the audit protections offer a pathway to abuse by individuals and groups that might want to use church status as a shield against enforcement of the rules regulating charitable organizations. September: Donald Trump tells Christian conservatives he'll repeal ban on political endorsements by tax-exempt religious groups (photos and video) So the temptation to make the church megaphone available -- on a deductible basis -- to organizations that have political agendas, but not necessarily religious ones, would be hard to resist, and nearly impossible for the IRS to control. Furthermore, explicit reversal of the ban on campaign activity is probably unnecessary. Even though they are obligated by law to refrain from political activity, many churches engage in it anyway.  At most, the ban on campaign participation seems to induce churches to constrain their engagement in politics. This makes their political activity mostly harmless, because an occasional reference in a sermon or a pastoral letter to an issue that is prominent in a political campaign is unlikely to move many votes. The recipients are probably inclined in the same directions as their church leaders are anyway, so low-key participation isn't terribly influential. On the other hand, if Congress tells churches -- and the rest of the world -- that churches are the one and only way to engage in political activity on a deductible basis, the constraints will disappear overnight. Why would anyone, or any institution, engage in politics without a deduction if they can easily arrange to do so on a deductible basis? The result will be a debasement of both churches and politics -- as if the latter weren't debased enough already!  Freeing churches to speak on politics is an idea with much appeal, since they are fundamentally expressive institutions. But the collateral damage would be considerable, and unnecessary. Congress has better things to do. Richard Schmalbeck is a professor of law at Duke University who specializes in tax and nonprofit organization law. ********* Have something to say about this topic? Use the comments to share your thoughts, and stay informed when readers reply to your comments by using the Notification Settings (in blue) just below.
30 points by The Plain Dealer | Income tax in the United States Internal Revenue Service Donald Trump Taxation in the United States Internal Revenue Code IRS tax forms Political campaign Law
IMF's Stand on Greek Bailout Unnerves Europe
Even as European governments are desperate to resolve a months-old standoff over the next phase of Greece’s bailout program, the IMF is holding firm on terms, Simon Nixon writes.
208 points by The Wall Street Journal | European Union Greece Greek language English language Cyprus English-language films Political campaign American films
Huntington Park councilwoman's consulting business raises questions about possible conflicts of interest
Karina Macias said she saw a business opportunity shortly after being elected to the Huntington Park City Council. She decided to become a political consultant and parlay her connections throughout the community to help raise campaign contributions for other aspiring candidates.  So far, she’s...
560 points by Los Angeles Times | Bus Public transport Bus stop Political campaign Bus transport Political corruption Minibus Trolleybus
John Kasich's allies launch political organization to promote his vision (and to counter Trump's)
The move, announced late Friday afternoon, will fuel speculation that Kasich is keeping his options open for the 2020 election -- perhaps as a GOP alternative to Trump. CLEVELAND, Ohio -- Top political advisers to John Kasich have formed a nonprofit organization that will promote themes the Ohio governor pushed during his unsuccessful run for last year's Republican presidential nomination. Two Paths America is "inspired by the imagery and rhetoric of ... Kasich's description of the public policy choices facing us and the need to take the higher path," according to a news release sent late Friday afternoon. "Two Paths America will take the same approach in supporting the best and highest policy ideas." The move will fuel speculation that Kasich is keeping his options open for the 2020 election -- perhaps as a GOP alternative to Trump. "Two Paths" was the title of a major speech Kasich gave at a time when he was eager to draw distinctions between his mild message of inclusion and Trump's divisive policy proposals. "Two Paths" also is the title of a book Kasich plans to release in April. The book will reflect on his campaign and explore issues important to the governor. GOP consultant John Weaver, the chief strategist on Kasich's White House bid, and Chris Schrimpf, who served as senior communications adviser on the campaign, are helping lead the Two Paths America launch. Columbus-based political consultant Doug Preisse and former Ohio House Speaker Jo Ann Davidson, two longtime members of Kasich's inner circle, are on the organization's board of directors. Kasich himself will not be involved with the effort, first reported by CNN. "I think this is just a natural extension of the policy positions from the campaign trail," Weaver told in a telephone interview Friday evening. To start, Weaver said, Two Paths America will focus primarily on national security and fiscal issues. A push to add a balanced budget amendment to the U.S. Constitution -- an idea Kasich traveled the country to promote in the run-up to his presidential campaign -- is featured prominently on the organization's website. Contrasts with Trump's actions and policies will be inevitable, given the wide gulf between him and Kasich, politically. But Weaver said that is not the initial goal. Term limits prevent Kasich, 64, from seeking a third consecutive term as governor. He has downplayed any interest he might have in another presidential campaign. But he refused to vote for Trump last fall, writing in Arizona Sen. John McCain instead. And he has spoken out against some of Trump's early decisions, particularly the president's ban on travel from predominantly Muslim countries. "We must strengthen our nation's security through well-thought out and constructed plans," Kasich said of the move last month. "The latest executive order is neither."
232 points by The Plain Dealer | John McCain President of the United States Republican Party George W. Bush Balanced Budget Amendment Political campaign United States Constitution Democratic Party
Bashar al-Assad praises Trump’s plan to defeat ISIS
Russia-backed Syrian President Bashar al-Assad praised President Trump’s plan to defeat ISIS, predicting Wednesday that it’s “ going to be positive.” “Trump during the campaign and after the campaign is promising regarding the priority of fighting terrorists, and mainly ISIS, that’s what we’ve been asking for during the last six years,” Assad told Belgian media,...
58 points by New York Post | Republic Golan Heights Bashar al-Assad Hafez al-Assad Syria World Kurdish language Political campaign
Is John Chiang the 'undervalued stock' in California's governor’s race?
Essential Politics: Becerra and lawmakers criticize Trump's comments on cash for California, Peter Thiel says no to a race for governor Feb. 7, 2017, 12:13 p.m. This is Essential Politics, our daily look at California political and government news. Here's what we're watching right now: Atty. Gen....
488 points by Los Angeles Times | Antonio Villaraigosa Jerry Brown Bill Clinton California Los Angeles United States Democracy Political campaign
De Blasio’s aides fear he will ‘sacrifice’ them to the feds
Mayor de Blasio’s aides are scared stiff about his impending interview with federal prosecutors in Manhattan over his fund-raising operation, a City Hall source said. “Folks in the mayor’s office are very nervous about the mayor going in and speaking,” the source said. “Everybody is expendable.” City Hall aides believe “someone is going to be...
698 points by New York Post | Political campaign Prosecutor Federal Bureau of Investigation New York City Jury Mayor of New York City Mayor City of London
Trump's victory sparks unprecedented downloads of encrypted chat app Signal
A presidential campaign rocked by e-mail hacks followed by the victory of a candidate who wants to increase government surveillance has sent Americans to new corners of the Internet. Fearful of private communications being used against them, millions of people are trying out once-obscure apps and...
1452 points by Los Angeles Times | Political campaign Want Network neutrality Hillary Rodham Clinton WANT Public relations Donald Trump Activism
Investigation finds evidence of 'discrimination' and 'pervasive' harassment by Sheriff James Fitzgerald
A nearly year-long investigation by the Howard County Office of Human Rights found that Howard County Sheriff James Fitzgerald discriminated against Lt. Charles Gable, who endured more than five years of "abusive" treatment while working for the agency. The 48-page decision, obtained from Gable's...
-1 points by Baltimore Sun | United States Coroner Constable Abuse Police Human rights Sheriff Political campaign
Veteran Austin ethics cop will retire
A native of Illinois who came to Texas in 1974 to work as a legal aid volunteer in Kingsville, Smith worked as a legislative aide to state Rep. Al Price, D-Beaumont, before joining Public Citizen in 1985. [...] he has been involved in a number of high-profile legislative battles over stricter ethics laws and changes to state laws on renewable energy and improved air quality. Changes in laws governing the electrical industry to benefit consumers and encourage more renewable energy sources, a program that has made Texas a national leader; approval of an incentives program to reduce emissions from plants and equipment, and to retrofit older diesel engines; adoption of a new energy code for buildings, and the passage of sweeping ethics reform in 1991 following an influence-peddling scandal.
1 points by The Houston Chronicle | Renewable energy Austin Texas Political campaign Wind power Political corruption Energy
The Run-Up: Is Lying Trump’s Strategy?
Mike Murphy and Paul Begala try to understand how Donald Trump could utter such a demonstrably deceptive statement about his role in the birther movement.
3499 points by The New York Times | Bill Clinton Hillary Rodham Clinton Barack Obama John McCain George W. Bush Internet Political campaign ITunes
Sheldon Adelson Focuses on Congressional Races, Despite Donald Trump’s Pleas
Mr. Adelson, the Las Vegas casino magnate, donated $40 million to Republicans in House and Senate races, with only $5 million going to Mr. Trump’s presidential efforts.
1833 points by The New York Times | United States Senate Newt Gingrich Sheldon Adelson Senate Mitt Romney Thomas S. Ricketts Political campaign United States House of Representatives
Tom 'Smitty' Smith, veteran Texas ethics and consumer watchdog, to retire
Tom "Smitty" Smith, the dean of ethics and consumer lobbyists with more than three decades at the State Capitol, is retiring early next year. Smith, 66, announced Tuesday that he will depart as Texas director of activist group Public Citizen just after the next legislative sessions begins in January.
1 points by The Houston Chronicle | Renewable energy Political campaign Wind power Political corruption Law
Goldman Sachs prohibits top employees from donating to Trump
Goldman Sachs has banned employees from making a variety of political contributions – including any to the presidential campaign for Donald Trump.
2 points by Atlanta Journal Constitution | Democratic Party Political campaign Accountable Fundraising Fundraising Hillary Rodham Clinton Lloyd Blankfein Goldman Sachs Donald Trump
Rubin: Lack of yard signs could be a sign of the times
Campaign consultants say they’d rather send mail than pound posts, and it seems like we’re seeing fewer placards        
-1 points by The Detroit News | Election Political campaign Macomb County Michigan Elections
Pols’ support could steer pot vote
Gov. Charlie Baker is a couple of $20 bills short of $4 million in his campaign account. Mayor Martin J. Walsh has set the annual fundraising record by an incumbent mayor — twice. And Speaker of the House Robert A. DeLeo set his own fundraising record this year, eclipsing the mark set by ... Robert A. DeLeo.Three of the most powerful people in Massachusetts politics are, not surprisingly, three of its best fundraisers.
-1 points by Boston Herald | Political action committee Elections Political campaign New Jersey Republican State Committee Republican State Committee of Pennsylvania Massachusetts United States Senate Election
Ex-Fattah strategist Lindenfeld, who testified against him, gets probation and a fine
Thomas Lindenfeld, the once-loyal political consultant to former U.S. Rep. Chaka Fattah, who testified for the government in the trial that ended with the lawmaker's conviction on racketeering and bribery charges, was sentenced Friday to four years' probation and a $5,000 fine.
-1 points by The Philadelphia Inquirer | Bill Clinton Harvey Bartle III Political corruption United States District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania United States district court Fraud President of the United States Political campaign
Campaigner uses mix of shoe leather and technology

199 points by Pittsburgh Post-Gazette | Voting Elections Democracy Voter turnout Barack Obama Voter registration Political campaign Regulatory Focus Theory
More than $4 billion has been spent on federal campaigns so far this cycle
About $858 million has been spent by presidential candidates.
26 points by The Washington Post | Political action committee Political campaign Federal Election Campaign Act Elections Preselection Election Committee The Age
Wealthy Mexican businessman guilty of making illegal campaign donations to San Diego mayoral candidates
A wealthy Mexican businessman accused of making illegal campaign donations to candidates in San Diego’s 2012 mayoral race was convicted Friday of 36 counts, including conspiracy to make political contributions by a foreign national. José Susumo Azano Matsura also was found guilty in federal court...
5 points by Los Angeles Times | Supreme Court of the United States Political campaign Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee San Diego Jury California's 50th congressional district California's 51st congressional district Fundraising