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.

Representative Norm Dicks, a Democrat from Washington, right to left, Representative J. Randy Forbes, a Republican from Virginia and chairman of the Armed Services Readiness Subcommittee, and Representative Peter Welch, a Democrat from Vermont, Dov Zakheim, president of the Zakheim Group, during the Bloomberg Government Defense Conference at the Newseum in Washington, D.C.

Photograph by Andrew Harrer/Bloomberg

Representative Norm Dicks, a Democrat from Washington, right to left, Representative J. Randy Forbes, a Republican from Virginia and chairman of the Armed Services Readiness Subcommittee, and Representative Peter Welch, a Democrat from Vermont, Dov Zakheim, president of the Zakheim Group, during the Bloomberg Government Defense Conference at the Newseum in Washington, D.C.

Democrats Push for Limits on Nonprofit Election Spending

House Democrats, led by Peter Welch of Vermont, are pushing back against Republican efforts to block any new Internal Revenue Service rules governing nonprofit groups, which are spending millions of dollars on campaigns while keeping their donors hidden. In a letter to the...

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A demonstrator holds a portrait of Edward Snowden during a protest against government surveillance on Oct. 26, 2013 in Washington, DC.

Photograph by Mandel Ngan/AFP via Getty Images

A demonstrator holds a portrait of Edward Snowden during a protest against government surveillance on Oct. 26, 2013 in Washington, DC.

USIS, Snowden Vetter, Follows Playbook for Firms Under Scrutiny

US Investigations Services LLC, the top provider of background checks to federal agencies, is battling to repair its reputation as it responds to vetting failures such as allowing Edward Snowden to handle classified information. Like BP Plc after the Gulf of Mexico oil...

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An MQ-8C Fire Scout unmanned helicopter by Northrop Grumman on the flight line at Naval Base Ventura County Point Mugu, Calif. on Sept. 17, 2013.

Photograph by Chad Slattery/Northrop Grumman via AP Photo

An MQ-8C Fire Scout unmanned helicopter by Northrop Grumman on the flight line at Naval Base Ventura County Point Mugu, Calif. on Sept. 17, 2013.

Northrop Grumman Led All Companies in Lobbying Last Year

In a year that saw Northrop Grumman Corp. fend off efforts to curb purchases of its Global Hawk Block 30 drones and fight defense spending cuts, the No. 5 U.S. contractor spent more money to lobby the government than any...

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Jay Danny Cooper urges Alabama residents to vote in the primary on March 13, 2012 in Birmingham, Alabama.

Photograph by Win McNamee/Getty Images

Jay Danny Cooper urges Alabama residents to vote in the primary on March 13, 2012 in Birmingham, Alabama.

Democratic Donor-Casino Owner at Center of Voting Rights Suit

Democratic donor Milton McGregor is at the center of a voting rights suit against Alabama Attorney General Luther Strange. Strange led the February 2013 raid on McGregor’s VictoryLand, a dog track more than 20 miles east of the state capital of Montgomery that...

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Quarterback Russell Wilson #3 of the Seattle Seahawks is tackled by linebacker Wesley Woodyard #52 of the Denver Broncos at CenturyLink Field on Aug. 17, 2013 in Seattle, Washington.

Photograph by Otto Greule Jr/Getty Images

Quarterback Russell Wilson #3 of the Seattle Seahawks is tackled by linebacker Wesley Woodyard #52 of the Denver Broncos at CenturyLink Field on Aug. 17, 2013 in Seattle, Washington.

If Broncos Wear Red and Seahawks Blue, You’ll Know Why

Super Bowl opponents Seattle Seahawks and Denver Broncos are rivals in the political arena as well. Seattle owner Paul Allen, a co-founder of Microsoft Corp., backed Democrat Hillary Clinton for president in 2008, according to the Center for Responsive Politics,...

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Northrop Grumman Corp.'s Longbow Apache helicopter.

Source: Northrop Grumman Corp. via Bloomberg

Northrop Grumman Corp.'s Longbow Apache helicopter.

Defense Contractors Lead $87 Million Lobbying by Top 10 in 2013

Lobbying spending by the 10 biggest U.S. contractors increased by just 2 percent last year over the previous 12 months as they faced a new round of across-the-board spending cuts and a partial government shutdown. The companies, including Northrop Grumman Corp. and...

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The A-3 tower was designed to test a GenCorp Inc. engine for a rocket program canceled in 2010.

Photograph by NASA via Bloomberg

The A-3 tower was designed to test a GenCorp Inc. engine for a rocket program canceled in 2010.

Congress Serving Pork — Not ‘Rocket Science’

When Congress agreed with President Barack Obama in 2010 and shut down the Constellation program to send astronauts to the moon and beyond, it did so with one condition: NASA finishes construction of a tower to test an engine for...

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A Boeing Co. 747-8 aircraft during the Seoul International Aerospace & Defense Exhibition 2013 in South Korea.

Photograph by SeongJoon Cho/Bloomberg

A Boeing Co. 747-8 aircraft during the Seoul International Aerospace & Defense Exhibition 2013 in South Korea.

Contractors Who Opposed Shutdown Give to Lawmakers Who Prolonged It

Political action committees of the 10 biggest federal contractors, including Lockheed Martin Corp. and Boeing Co., contributed to more than 60 percent of House Republicans even after they opposed ending a government shutdown that caused “serious disruptions” in the companies’...

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The Republican National Convention (RNC)

Photograph by Daniel Acker/Bloomberg

Bloomberg By the Numbers: $343 Million

  The six major political party committees raised $343 million during the first 11 months of 2013, up from $326 million during the same period in 2009, according to the Campaign Finance Institute, a Washington-based research organization. While the Republican...

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