Washington (CNN) - They've become some of the most important players in campaign politics over the past four years, and brand new fundraising figures indicate that the influence of outside groups is not diminishing.
In fact, the numbers suggest that these organizations, which are free of many of the fundraising rules that keep checks on candidates and party committees, will have a major impact on the 2014 Senate, House and gubernatorial elections, which are shaping up to be the most expensive midterms ever.
(CNN) - Chris Christie says that limiting campaign donations is "ridiculous," and is calling for a 48-hour reporting period for disclosing contributions.
New Jersey's Republican governor said at a town hall in Somerset Tuesday that rules limiting the amount someone can give to a campaign doesn't "stop money from getting into politics anyway."
The Sunday political talk shows covered all the top political news of the week, ranging from the deadly shooting at Fort Hood, to a report about interrogation methods at the CIA, to the Affordable Care Act.
If you missed any of the Sunday political chatter, we've got you covered:
Here's what we're watching Thursday Inside Politics:
Turns out money is the same thing as speech in the eyes of the U.S. Supreme Court.
SCOTUS campaign finance in a nutshell: After the Supreme Court ruling in McCutcheon v. FEC yesterday, you can't just give as much money as you want to any candidate. Those limits are still set at $5,200 every two years. But there's now no limit on how much total you can give to all candidates. The old limit was $123,000 every two years. As Jeffrey Toobin put it on CNN just after the decision, essentially, in the eyes of the court, corporations are people and money is speech.
John Roberts’ majority ruling: “Money in politics may at times seem repugnant to some, but so too does much of what the First Amendment vigorously protects. If the First Amendment protects flag burning, funeral protests and Nazi parades - despite the profound offense such spectacles cause - it surely protects political campaign speech despite popular opposition.”
Stephen Breyer’s dissent: The decision “creates a loophole that will allow a single individual to contribute millions of dollars to a political party or to a candidate’s campaign. Taken together with Citizens United v. FEC, today’s decision eviscerates our Nation’s campaign finance laws, leaving a remnant incapable of dealing with the grave problems of democratic legitimacy that those laws were intended to resolve.”
Washington (CNN) - If you're rich and want to give money to a lot of political campaigns, the Supreme Court ruled Wednesday that you can.
The 5-4 ruling eliminated limits on how much money people can donate in total in one election season.
(CNN) – Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid’s campaign committee said Tuesday it had done nothing improper when it spent nearly $17,000 in campaign funds on hundreds of items from a jewelry company owned by Reid’s granddaughter, Ryan Elisabeth Reid.
Those items - coasters, picture frames and other trinkets with themes from Reid’s hometown of Searchlight, Nevada - were given to staff members and campaign supporters as thank you gifts, according to a Reid aide. Each item is valued at about $50.
Washington (CNN) - A free-speech legal fight over the fuel of partisan politics - the billions at stake in federal campaign donations - produced a predictably divided Supreme Court on Tuesday.
A spirited hour of oral arguments left in doubt whether current aggregate limits on direct campaign contributions by individuals - in the Federal Election Campaign Act - will be upheld.FULL STORY
New York (CNNMoney) - Here's one of corporate America's worst-kept secrets: Companies are propping up politicians' campaigns with huge stacks of cash.
But a new study shows that more publicly-traded firms are being more upfront than ever about who they're backing and how much they're paying.FULL STORY
Washington (CNN) – The congressional ban on direct campaign contributions to federal candidates by corporations will stay in place after the Supreme Court on Monday refused to hear an appeal from a campaign supporter of Hillary Clinton.
The justices last week accepted for a review a separate appeal over individual donation limits. That case will be argued in the fall, with an expected ruling some months later.
The case denied Monday is Danielczyk v. United States (12-579).
Washington (CNN) – The Supreme Court will wade once again into the politically tricky issue of campaign finance laws, agreeing to hear a challenge to individual donation limits in federal election campaigns.
At issue is whether strict limits on direct campaign contributions by individuals– in the Federal Election Campaign Act– violate the First Amendment. Oral arguments will be held in the fall.