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Paul Blumenthal
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Paul Blumenthal is a reporter at The Huffington Post covering campaign finance and money-in-politics. His work has appeared on PBS' Frontline, MSNBC, CNN and The New York Times and been included in Principles and Practice of American Politics: Classic and Contemporary Readings, 5th Edition and in Transparency International's Global Corruption Report: Climate Change. He previously worked as the senior writer for The Sunlight Foundation.

Entries by Paul Blumenthal

Donald Trump Sends His Very First Fundraising Email Amid Campaign Money Woes

(0) Comments | Posted June 21, 2016 | 11:06 AM

WASHINGTON -- With less than a month to go before the Republican National Convention, Donald Trump sent the first fundraising email of his entire campaign on Tuesday. The billionaire eccentric promised to personally match all contributions up to $2 million.

The email comes...

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Donald Trump's Latest Campaign Finance Report Makes Dumpster Fires Look Good

(0) Comments | Posted June 20, 2016 | 10:19 PM

WASHINGTON -- Presumptive Republican Party presidential nominee Donald Trump entered June with just $1.3 million cash on hand in his campaign account, according to a campaign finance report filed on Monday. The tiny sum is the result of Trump’s poor first month of fundraising from donors that netted just $3.1...

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Donald Trump Trails Hillary Clinton Significantly In The Money Race

(0) Comments | Posted June 10, 2016 | 5:37 PM

WASHINGTON -- Donald Trump is starting the general election match-up against Hillary Clinton in a precarious financial position. By the end of April, the most recently available period for campaign disclosures, the Trump campaign and groups that will support him trailed Team Clinton by more than $200 million. At the same...

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Donald Trump's New Political Director Is Part Of The Republican Influence Machine

(0) Comments | Posted June 7, 2016 | 5:47 PM

WASHINGTON -- Donald Trump has railed against the corrupt Washington establishment in the Republican Party as he has rampaged toward the GOP's presidential nomination. Now that he can grasp it in his hands, his campaign is hiring members of the very community he castigated.

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These States Are Stepping Up To Reform Money In Politics In 2016

(0) Comments | Posted May 24, 2016 | 2:37 PM

WASHINGTON -- The next front in the battle for campaign finance and lobbying reforms will likely be on the ballot in Washington state and South Dakota in November. Activists there have either succeeded or are well on their way to securing ballot...

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Bernie Sanders' Campaign Is Feeling The Money Burn

(6) Comments | Posted May 20, 2016 | 5:04 PM

WASHINGTON -- Bernie Sanders is burning through his campaign account.

The Sanders presidential campaign began May with just $5.8 million cash on hand, according to reports filed Friday with the Federal Election Commission. That was significantly less than the...

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Hedge Funds Launch New Lobbying Effort To Protect Their Power

(0) Comments | Posted May 20, 2016 | 2:05 PM

WASHINGTON -- Billionaire activist investors are joining forces to raid Congress for more power.

According to a Wall Street Journal report, hedge fund operators Paul Singer, Carl Icahn, Bill Ackman, Barry Rosenstein and Dan Loeb formed a lobbying trade group called the Council for Investor Rights...

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The Vultures' Vultures: How A New Hedge-Fund Strategy Is Corrupting Washington

(1) Comments | Posted May 12, 2016 | 6:13 PM

WASHINGTON - Take Robert Shapiro.

A Harvard-trained political economist, Shapiro is the head of a consulting firm called Sonecon. That business card doesn't do it for you? He's got a few more in his wallet:

Senior fellow at the Georgetown University School...

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Two Of America’s Richest Men Secretly Tried To Sway Montana’s Judicial Elections

(1) Comments | Posted May 5, 2016 | 3:30 PM

WASHINGTON -- Ed Sheehy was driving home one day in the middle of his 2012 run for a Montana Supreme Court seat when he received a call from a local newspaper reporter. The reporter wanted to read Sheehy the transcript of a blistering new radio ad.


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Why The 2016 Election May Not Break Spending Records

(0) Comments | Posted April 29, 2016 | 6:37 PM

WASHINGTON -- The 2016 presidential election had been predicted to be the most expensive ever, fueled by a massive field of candidates and the proliferation of super PACs.

But so far, the 2016 election isn’t as record-shattering as one might expect.

By the end of March,...

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Koch Brothers Back New Effort To Make It Harder To Track Dark Money

(0) Comments | Posted April 27, 2016 | 5:28 PM

UPDATE: April 28 -- The legislation passed out of the Ways and Means Committee on a party line vote with all Republicans in support and Democrats in opposition. Prior to the vote, committee members were sent another letter in support of the bill. This letter came...

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Corporations Opposed To North Carolina's Anti-LGBT Law Helped Elect Its Supporters

(1) Comments | Posted April 27, 2016 | 1:25 PM

WASHINGTON -- More than 100 corporations have voiced extreme displeasure with North Carolina’s government since the state legislature passed a bill blocking municipalities from enacting their own rules to prevent anti-LGBT discrimination. Dozens of these corporations also had a hand in electing the very Republican majority that...

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This Guy Spent A Record $12.7 Million Running For Congress -- And Lost

(0) Comments | Posted April 26, 2016 | 12:09 PM

WASHINGTON -- Thanks to the record spending of one candidate, the Democratic primary in Maryland’s 8th congressional district will go down in history. David Trone, the multi-millionaire owner of the retailer Total Wine & More, spent $12.7 million of his own money on the campaign, making...

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Lawmakers Respond To Democracy Spring Protests With Call For Democracy Hearings

(0) Comments | Posted April 21, 2016 | 3:58 PM

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Bernie Sanders Is Raising Money Hand Over Fist -- And Spending It The Same Way

(0) Comments | Posted April 20, 2016 | 10:54 PM

WASHINGTON -- The small-donor machine built by Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) has raised by far the most money of any candidate in the presidential race this year. The only problem: He's spending the most by far, too.

Sanders raised $46 million from more...

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Protesters Invade Capitol To Protest Corrupt Money In Politics

(0) Comments | Posted April 15, 2016 | 11:21 AM

Thirteen activists zip-tied themselves to the scaffolding in the Capitol rotunda Friday as part of a weeklong civil disobedience action protesting the corrupting role of money in politics and attacks on the right to vote.

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Why A GOP Lobbyist Is Giving Money To A Democratic Senate Candidate

(0) Comments | Posted April 15, 2016 | 8:51 AM

WASHINGTON -- A white Republican lobbyist has been giving money to Democratic Senate candidate Rep. Donna Edwards (D-Md.), who is African-American, because, the lobbyist says, the Senate's not diverse enough.

Sam Geduldig first gave $200 to the Edwards campaign last year, an...

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Bernie Sanders Reaches Down Ballot To Expand His Political Revolution

(0) Comments | Posted April 13, 2016 | 3:07 PM

WASHINGTON -- Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) has raised an unprecedented amount of money from small donors for his campaign for the Democratic presidential nomination. Now, he is using that massive list to help raise money for down-ballot Democrats that would be allies in Congress.

On Wednesday, the...

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Bernie Sanders Has A Very Lonely But Very Committed Following On Wall Street

(0) Comments | Posted April 13, 2016 | 12:03 PM

For months now, Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) has ridden a message of concern and anger over the indulgences of the U.S. banking industry to greats heights in the Democratic primary. Now, as that primary hits its closing stretch, and as Sanders is in need of an...

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This Group Raised $11 Million To Defeat Citizens United. So Why Do People Hate Them?

(0) Comments | Posted April 13, 2016 | 10:09 AM

WASHINGTON -- In March 2015, a new group showed up on the political scene, seemingly out of thin air. It called itself End Citizens United PAC and said its goal was to overturn the controversial Supreme Court decision by electing more Democrats.


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