December 11, 2002 Once-secret documents released by a panel of federal judges seem to confirm that major political contributors enjoy special relationships with powerful lawmakers. The judges are considering the constitutionality of the new campaign-finance law. NPR's Peter Overby reports.
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December 4, 2002 Opponents on the left and the right challenge the new campaign finance law in court, saying it violates free-speech rights by limiting "issue ads" paid for by interest groups. A special panel of federal judges will hear the case. NPR's Peter Overby reports.
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November 28, 2002 Mexico says despite a new Bush administration plan to open U.S. highways to Mexican trucks beyond the 20-mile commercial zones along the border, the move still treats Mexican truckers more harshly than those from Canada. Hear NPR's Peter Overby.
November 25, 2002 Reversing a policy it has enforced for more than a generation, the Federal Election Commission says candidates for federal office may pay themselves a limited salary from their campaign funds. NPR's Peter Overby reports.
November 22, 2002 Advocates of campaign finance reform say the Federal Election Commission has "cut the guts" out of changes imposed after Congress passed the McCain-Feingold measure and its ban on "soft money" in political campaigns. NPR's Peter Overby reports.
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November 20, 2002 The fate of the campaign finance law enacted earlier this year is in the hands of three federal judges, who are gathering evidence for a trial. But the documents being submitted for that trial are unusual in that the interesting parts are all obscured from view. NPR's Peter Overby explains why.
November 14, 2002 Critics of the new campaign finance reform law say Sen. John McCain's victory will be short-lived. They claim the Supreme Court will find much of the law unconstitutional, and loopholes abound. But the Arizona Republican vows to continue the fight in the new year. NPR's Peter Overby reports.
November 14, 2002 Pollsters find that negative advertising during this fall's campaigns displeased prospective voters more than ever. But while complaints about attack ads persist, the strategy is not likely to disappear. NPR's Peter Overby reports.
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November 6, 2002 Business groups are pleased with the Republican takeover of Congress. They say they were especially influential this year in electing pro-business candidates. Labor unions and their Democratic allies are, of course, not happy about election results. NPR's Peter Overby reports. (4:00)
November 5, 2002 Some analysts say the 2002 congressional races are the most lavishly financed in U.S. history. But tough provisions of a new campaign finance reform law take effect at midnight Tuesday, making so-called "soft money" off-limits to party committees. NPR's Peter Overby reports.
November 4, 2002 Campaigns for judgeships are usually thought of as quiet affairs, and few attract the kind of dollars thrown at Senate seats and governorships. But things are different this year in Southern Mississippi, where a seat on the state Supreme Court has become a battleground in the larger war over liability suits. These days there are few issues that bring out the big donations faster. NPR's Peter Overby reports on the millions showing up in Mississippi. (5:00)
October 17, 2002 Redistricting in Pennsylvania has pitted two veteran House members against one another in one of the most hotly contested election races in the country. NPR's Peter Overby reports that Republican George Gekas and Democratic opponent Tim Holden are getting help from interest groups when they didn't even ask for it.
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October 16, 2002 Some lawmakers suspect that financial industry lobbyists are holding back on contributions to put pressure on congressional leaders who oppose certain revisions to federal bankruptcy law. But trade group officials deny the claim, although they admit to supporting provisions that make it easier to file for bankruptcy. Some lobbyists say their failure to attend fund-raising events on Capitol Hill isn't personal. NPR's Peter Overby reports.
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