Mayors, governors using "dark money" groups raise questions

AP News
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Posted: Feb 29, 2016 1:18 PM

NEW YORK (AP) — So-called "dark money" election groups that can allow donors to fund political causes anonymously have been major players in federal elections for years.

But more and more mayors and governors are turning to them to help promote their political agendas and, in some cases, navigate crises.

Recently, mayors such as Bill de Blasio in New York and Eric Garcetti in Los Angeles as well as governors such as New Jersey's Chris Christie, have had their agendas bolstered by nonprofits they helped create.

And Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder tapped his nonprofit to hire a team of public relations specialists as his administration struggles with the Flint water contamination crisis.

These nonprofit groups raise money from private sources, are exempt from spending restrictions and have raised concerns among good government groups.