FollowTheMoney.org, OpenSecrets.org

FollowTheMoney.org is a website dedicated to informing people about the amount of campaign contributions each politician has received.

OpenSecrets.org is similar, but also gives other information about such things as news, events, and personal wealth and net worth of each candidate or politician.

It is unclear how often the information is updated.  The information does not always match what we see in the news articles.

Below are the websites for both.  They are interesting to browse.

Update: Maplight.org is another good resource on money in politics.

(Updated)

http://maplight.org/

http://www.opensecrets.org/

http://www.followthemoney.org/

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Trump In New Hampshire Tonight

Donald Trump’s political rally at Winnacunnet High School in Hampton, New Hampshire, is sure to draw at least several hundred attendees – if not more than a thousand – and an international media following, writes NBC News.

It won’t quite be the small, intimate town hall, restaurant meet-and-greet, or local gun shop stop that Republican voters here are used to in the August before the primary.

“Trump is not really running a political campaign, a traditional campaign. He is running a PR campaign,” said Republican strategist Jamie Burnett, Mitt Romney’s former New Hampshire political director in 2007-2008.

“When he does pop into a state, he usually comes into a very controlled, spectacle event,” said Burnett.

New Hampshire, the nation’s first primary state, is famous for putting presidential candidates through a rigorous test. Candidates are repeatedly grilled with detailed policy questions from voters about issues at every stop they make. But Trump – who is leading the GOP field in New Hampshire polls – has focused much of his campaigning lately on national television and media appearances, and has not done as many of the small events that the state is known for as some other Republicans have.

http://www.c-span.org/video/?327605-1/donald-trump-campaign-rally-hampton-new-hampshire

Donald Trump Speaks On Campaign Financing


Secular Talk

In an offhanded remark, Donald Trump discussed campaign finance and the effect it has on politicians.

ABC News:

“It’s no secret that Donald Trump is rich. And it’s no surprise that money influences politics.

“But few political candidates — let alone presidential contenders — speak about it with as much candor and openness as Donald Trump.”

In the video above, Secular Talk discusses campaign financing and the lobby industry and Donald Trump.

http://abcnews.go.com/Politics/donald-trumps-surprisingly-honest-lessons-big-money-politics/story?id=32993736

What Is The ‘Club For Growth?’

According to Opensecrets.org, the largest donor of money to presidential candidate Rand Paul is a group called the Club for Growth.  What is the Club for Growth?

Right Wing Watch:

“Club for Growth (CFG) touts itself as the inheritor of Ronald Reagan’s ‘vision of limited government and lower taxes’ and it advances this anti-government vision through its support of political candidates who hew to its right-wing economic orthodoxy. The Club for Growth has aggressively opposed several moderate Republicans often to the consternation of GOP political leaders.”

Club for Growth’s website claims they have a network of over 100,000 people, though Right Wing Watch states only that they have “more than 9,000” members.

RWW states that the CFG President is a politician himself – U.S. Senator Pat Toomey.

CFG board members include Richard Gilder, formerly Chairman of the Manhattan Institute, and Thomas Rhodes, President of the conservative National Review magazine.  Rhodes is associated with a variety of right-wing organizations, including the Heritage Foundation.

The founder of the Club for Growth is Stephen Moore.

According to Right Wing Watch,  Moore is an editor and contributor to the National Review, and an economics correspondent for Human Events. He is also President of the Free Enterprise Fund.

Prior to starting the Club for Growth, Moore was the director of fiscal policy studies at the Cato Institute, and has stayed on as a “senior fellow.”  He also served at the right-wing Heritage Foundation and he was an aide to Republican Representative Dick Armey.

Opensecrets.org writes they were founded in 1999 and are a conservative political action group (PAC) that seeks to promote public policies that support a conservative economic agenda.

“The Club for Growth accomplishes its mission by raising money through its political action committee and donating it to candidates that adhere to this vision,” writes Right Wing Watch

So, long story short, the Club for Growth takes donations and then gives that money to politicians as campaign contributions. They will only support those want to implement their right-wing conservative agenda – lower taxes (for the rich), “entitlement reform” (e.g., cutting social security), free trade (like the TPP), school reform and vouchers (i.e., de-funding public schools), etc.

(Updated post)

http://www.rightwingwatch.org/content/club-growth#sthash.FVpZVKsZ.dpuf

https://www.opensecrets.org/orgs/summary.php?id=D000000763

Rand Paul Releases Video Of Himself Taking A Chainsaw To Tax Code


Sam Seder

Senator Rand Paul takes a chainsaw to the tax code in a recent video…

Business Insider writes that Paul (R-Kentucky) released a new video on July 21st where he appears to be literally destroying the US tax code.

Business Insider:

“Paul has made tax reform central to his presidential campaign. To draw attention to his plan, Paul is asking his supporters to vote how they want to see him shred the current tax system.

“The options for his supporters are: chainsaw, fire, and wood chipper.

“‘Hey I’m Rand Paul and I’m trying to kill the tax code — all 70,000 pages of it,’ Paul declares in his video.

“Then, an electric guitar version of the American anthem plays as Paul proceeds to torch, chop up, and rip through the tax code.”

Sam Seder and Majority Report discussed it on their podcast.

http://www.businessinsider.com/rand-paul-chainsaw-tax-code-2015-7#ixzz3hc8Qc0PV

http://www.politico.com/story/2015/07/rand-paul-tax-code-chainsaw-120416.html

USA Today: Should Hillary Pay Interns?

Carolyn Osorio recently wrote an op-ed for the USA Today about her unpaid internship with the campaign of Hillary Clinton.  Osorio believed that the “fellow” position would be paid.  Below are some excerpts.

“When Hillary announced her second run for the White House, I felt my passion for politics reignite. I quickly applied for and was offered a position as a Hillary for America fellow to work on the campaign. I couldn’t have been more excited — until I was told I’d have to move to Nevada and work full time on my own dime.”

“I couldn’t believe my ears. I did not apply as a routine volunteer but as a fellow. Its application process with an elaborate screening and interview process was now revealed to be an ugly lie. If Hillary hopes to inspire young people, to prove she understands our interests she should offer substance to earn our votes.”

“The campaign’s ‘cheapness’ is being lauded as a successful step away from her failure in 2008.”

“I had hoped a trailblazer would be more willing to break the mold of indentured servitude that haunts my generation. Finding out that Hillary perpetuates the exploitation known as unpaid internships was like discovering that Santa wasn’t real.”

Donald Trump Wholeheartedly Supported By…Daughter

Ivanka Trump told CNBC Wednesday that as an American, she’d be “very lucky” if her father, Donald Trump, ran for U.S. president.

“I would support him and encourage him wholeheartedly,” Ivanka Trump said in an interview with CNBC’s “Closing Bell.”

“I have the unique perspective of being by his side every day and understanding how incredibly capable and just want an amazing visionary he is. As a citizen, it would be amazing if he makes that decision,” she said.

Ivanka Trump is the executive vice president of development and acquisitions for The Trump Organization, according to CNBC.

In March, Donald Trump formed an exploratory committee to consider a run for President of the United States for 2016, but he has yet to announce a decision. He also considered a presidential bid in 2012.

(Read More: President Donald Trump will save us? Ha! )

In a statement regarding the exploratory committee, the real estate developer and star of “The Apprentice” Donald Trump touted his Hotel business experience and wealth.

http://www.businessinsider.com/heres-how-donald-trump-is-framing-his-potential-presidential-campaign-2015-3