Political Capital
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Jonathan Salant

covers campaign finance and lobbying in Washington. He was president of the National Press Club and started in Washington in 1987.


Elon Musk, chief executive officer of Space Exploration Technologies Corp. (SpaceX), is seen inside the capsule on a screen during the unveiling of the Manned Dragon V2 Space Taxi in Hawthorne, California, on May 29, 2014.

Photograph by Patrick T. Fallon/Bloomberg

Elon Musk, chief executive officer of Space Exploration Technologies Corp. (SpaceX), is seen inside the capsule on a screen during the unveiling of the Manned Dragon V2 Space Taxi in Hawthorne, California, on May 29, 2014.

SpaceX Increases Lobbying as It Shoots for the Stars

Elon Musk’s Space Exploration Technologies Corp., trying to break into the $67.6 billion market for large military and spy satellite launches, boosted its lobbying expenses by 30 percent during the first half of 2014 over a year ago, new Senate...

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Russia's Soyuz TMA-13M spacecraft carrying the International Space Station (ISS) crew blasts off from the launch pad at Russian-leased Baikonur cosmodrome on May 29, 2014.

Photograph by Kirill Kudryavrsev/AFP via Getty Images

Russia's Soyuz TMA-13M spacecraft carrying the International Space Station (ISS) crew blasts off from the launch pad at Russian-leased Baikonur cosmodrome on May 29, 2014.

U.S.-Russian Space Industry: ‘Business as Usual’

Apollo 11 was launched to the Moon 35 years ago on this date. Today, the U.S. can’t get astronauts to the International Space Station or put large military satellites into orbit without Russian help. With the retirement of the shuttle...

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A faring, part of the Antares rocket, is rotated with the help of an Orbital Sciences Corp. employee inside the Orbital horizontal integration facility (HIF) at the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) Wallops Space Facility in Wallops Island, Virginia.

Photograph by Andrew Harrer/Bloomberg

A faring, part of the Antares rocket, is rotated with the help of an Orbital Sciences Corp. employee inside the Orbital horizontal integration facility (HIF) at the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) Wallops Space Facility in Wallops Island, Virginia.

Shelby: Protecting Taxpayer, Not Boeing

Sen. Richard Shelby of Alabama says he’s trying to help U.S. taxpayers, not Boeing Co., by requiring companies competing to send astronauts to the International Space Station to file detailed financial and accounting reports justifying their costs. “NASA and its contractors have a...

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Space Exploration Technologies Corp.'s 
(SpaceX) Falcon 9 rocket stands in Cape Canaveral, Florida, U.S., in this handout photo made available to the media on on May 18, 2012.

Photograph by Roger Gilbertson/ SpaceX via Bloomberg

Space Exploration Technologies Corp.'s (SpaceX) Falcon 9 rocket stands in Cape Canaveral, Florida, U.S., in this handout photo made available to the media on on May 18, 2012.

Space Industry Isn’t Worried About Loss of Russian Engines

Russian calls to keep its rocket engines away from the U.S. are most likely more bluster than a real threat, says Michael Lopez-Alegria, president of the Commercial Spaceflight Federation. Lopez-Alegria, whose trade group counts Elon Musk’s Space Exploration Technologies Corp....

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U.S. House Majority Leader Rep. Eric Cantor (R-VA) speaks during a news conference on June 11, 2014 on Capitol Hill.

Photograph by Alex Wong/Getty Images

U.S. House Majority Leader Rep. Eric Cantor (R-VA) speaks during a news conference on June 11, 2014 on Capitol Hill.

Cantor Out, Democrat Starts Raising Money for Seat

One of the candidates hoping to succeed outgoing House Majority Leader Eric Cantor in Congress has sent out a plea for campaign contributions. The Democratic nominee, that is. College professor Jack Trammell says in a fundraising e-mail that Cantor’s upset...

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Elon Musk, chief executive officer of Space Exploration Technologies Corp. (SpaceX), left, sits with guests inside the Manned Dragon V2 Space Taxi in Hawthorne, California, on May 29, 2014.

Photograph by Patrick T. Fallon/Bloomberg

Elon Musk, chief executive officer of Space Exploration Technologies Corp. (SpaceX), left, sits with guests inside the Manned Dragon V2 Space Taxi in Hawthorne, California, on May 29, 2014.

Elon Musk, SpaceX Aim at Final Frontier

In the pilot episode of “Star Trek: The Next Generation,” Captain Jean-Luc Picard turns to his adversary, Q, and says, “The unknown is what brings us out here.” Gwynne Shotwell, president of Elon Musk’s Space Exploration Technologies Corp., feels the same...

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Iowa Republican Senatorial candidate Joni Ernst, left, former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, center, and U.S. Sen. Deb Fischer, R-Neb., right, during a campaign rally for Ernst, on April 27, 2014, in West Des Moines, Iowa.

Photograph by Charlie Neibergall/AP Photo

Iowa Republican Senatorial candidate Joni Ernst, left, former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, center, and U.S. Sen. Deb Fischer, R-Neb., right, during a campaign rally for Ernst, on April 27, 2014, in West Des Moines, Iowa.

U.S. Chamber, Debt-Increase Supporter, Backs Candidates Who Didn’t

In February, Bruce Josten, chief lobbyist for the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, sent a letter to members of the House and Senate. “Raising the debt limit is necessary to avoid any question of a threat of government default of any...

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Wrestlers during the Ceremonial Sumo Tournament at the Yasukuni Shrine on April 4, 2014 in Tokyo.

Photograph by Keith Tsuji/Getty Images

Wrestlers during the Ceremonial Sumo Tournament at the Yasukuni Shrine on April 4, 2014 in Tokyo.

Norquist: ‘Sumo Wrestlers’ Will Fight to Draw — None Leave Ring Before ’16

Anti-tax activist Grover Norquist says the millions of dollars that will be spent on the 2014 congressional elections won’t any alleviate any of the gridlock in Washington. Speaking at a daylong conference in Washington on finding common ground between liberals...

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