Download
HTML Embed
HTML EMBED
Click to Copy
Marketplace Morning Report

China's hidden debt

Jul 16, 2019

Latest Episodes

Download
HTML Embed
HTML EMBED
Click to Copy
Download
HTML Embed
HTML EMBED
Click to Copy
Download
HTML Embed
HTML EMBED
Click to Copy
Marketplace Morning Report
Download
HTML Embed
HTML EMBED
Click to Copy
Marketplace Morning Report
Download
HTML Embed
HTML EMBED
Click to Copy
Marketplace Morning Report
Download
HTML Embed
HTML EMBED
Click to Copy
Download
HTML Embed
HTML EMBED
Click to Copy
Marketplace
Download
HTML Embed
HTML EMBED
Click to Copy
Marketplace Morning Report
Download
HTML Embed
HTML EMBED
Click to Copy
Marketplace Morning Report
Download
HTML Embed
HTML EMBED
Click to Copy
Marketplace Morning Report

Keeping Obama’s machine — and mailing list — going

Mark Garrison Mar 13, 2013
Share Now on:
HTML EMBED:
COPY

On Wednesday night, President Obama speaks to big money donors and activists at an event for Organizing for Action, the group former top Obama aides run to support the President’s political agenda. Tickets went for $50,000 per person. OFA is a 501(c)(4) group, so it’s able to raise unlimited money, without telling where it comes from.

Dark money groups are nothing new on the left or right. They spent a fortune in the last election. But this one’s got something special.

“The problem is they’re a dark money group with a direct tie to the president,” says Lisa Rosenberg of the open government group Sunlight Foundation. “It’s an opportunity to sell access to the president to the highest bidder.”

Rosenberg and many like her have been sounding the alarm about a new wave of money in politics since Citizens United, the 2010 Supreme Court ruling declaring open season on political spending by corporations and unions. President Obama joined the chorus during his 2010 State of the Union speech, prompting Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito to famously shake his head from his second row seat.

Critics cried hypocrisy when the OFA launched. In response, the organization recently said it won’t take corporate, foreign or lobbyist money, and it promises some quarterly disclosure. But critics say the disclosure is disturbingly infrequent and incomplete.

“We will never really know if they are disclosing what they say they’re going to be disclosing,” says Viveca Novak of the Center for Responsive Politics. “Because 501(c)(4)s aren’t required to disclose their donors.”

Her group tracks money in politics, something made increasingly difficult by the explosive growth of dark money groups. But, following the money is a growth industry.

If you’re a member of your local public radio station, we thank you — because your support helps those stations keep programs like Marketplace on the air.  But for Marketplace to continue to grow, we need additional investment from those who care most about what we do: superfans like you.

Your donation — as little as $5 — helps us create more content that matters to you and your community, and to reach more people where they are – whether that’s radio, podcasts or online.

When you contribute directly to Marketplace, you become a partner in that mission: someone who understands that when we all get smarter, everybody wins.