90.9 WBUR - Boston's NPR news station
Top Stories:
PLEDGE NOW
Money, Access, And The White House

Barack Obama was a controversial pathbreaker in putting big private money in campaign politics.  Now he’s doing it in the White House.  We investigate.

The White House in Washington is seen on Wednesday, March 6, 2013. (AP)

The White House in Washington is seen on Wednesday, March 6, 2013. (AP)

Swanky dinner digs in Washington last night, as President Obama met with a “Founders Summit” of the new group launched to battle around the country for his second term priorities.

It’s raising big money – private money – to fight conservatives like Karl Rove and the Koch Brothers and more over the national agenda. To fight fire with fire.

But critics say it’s unprecedented and dangerous for a sitting president to put high rollers in such a close, cash embrace of the White House. That it tempts corruption at the very top.

This hour, On Point: money politics and the presidency.

-Tom Ashbrook

Guests

Philip Rucker, White House correspondent for the Washington Post. (@philiprucker)

Fred Wertheimer, founder and President of Democracy 21, which advocates for transparency in government and campaign finance reform. (@fredwertheimer)

Tad Devine, Democratic strategist. President of Devine Mulvey, a Democratic media consulting firm. He was a senior adviser in Al Gore’s 2000 and John Kerry’s 2004 Presidential campaigns. (@taddevine)

From Tom’s Reading List

CNN “The dinner including the president comes amid criticism that the group, which is registered as a non-profit, social-welfare organization, plans to grant special access to the president for top OFA donors–a claim that Jim Messina, who steered the 2012 re-election campaign and is now the new group’s national chairman, has attempted to rebuke.”

The Hill “Organizing for Action has given up corporate cash, but watchdog groups won’t be satisfied until the pro-Obama nonprofit is shut down for good.  The lobbying group, which was built from the remnants of President Obama’s reelection machine, has come under intense pressure from good-government advocates who say it’s ripe for corruption.”

USA Today “The non-profit advocacy group created to lobby for President Obama’s second-term agenda announced Thursday that it will not accept any corporate money, reversing course after blistering accusations that it was selling White House access to donors.”

Please follow our community rules when engaging in comment discussion on this site.
ONPOINT
TODAY
Oct 30, 2014
Realtor Helen Hertz stands in front of one of her listings in Cleveland Heights, Ohio Friday, Oct. 24, 2014. Hertz, a real estate agent for more than three decades, has seen firsthand what has happened to the market in the wake of the recession and foreclosure crisis. (AP)

Home ownership rates are at a 20-year low. Millennials and more aren’t buying. We’ll look at what American’s think now about owning a home.

Oct 30, 2014
Soylent is a new meal-replacement substance meant to offer a complete nutritional alternative to traditional food. (Courtesy Soylent)

Soylent is a grey smoothie the consistency of pancake batter that claims it can replace all your food. On a crowded planet, is this the future of food? Plus: what does the Antares rocket crash mean for private space travel?

RECENT
SHOWS
Oct 29, 2014
A visitor looks at the simple wooden cross that marks the grave of Welsh poet and playwright Dylan Thomas, in Laugharne, Wales, Sept. 17, 1963. (AP)

A century after his birth, poet and writer Dylan Thomas lives on. We look at his exuberant work and short life.

 
Oct 29, 2014
In this Tuesday, Oct. 1, 2013 image provided by the Utah Division of Wildlife Resources, a young bear is rescued from drowning after eluding officials, at Lake Powell, Utah. (AP)

A big debate in the West over transferring Federal public lands to states. We’ll hear from both sides.

On Point Blog
On Point Blog
The Explicast, Episode Two: Why Is Election Day On A Tuesday?
Friday, Oct 24, 2014

The Explicast is back for another round. This time, we’re looking at Election Day, and why we all keep voting on a random Tuesday in early November.

More »
2 Comments
 
Our Week In The Web: October 24, 2014
Friday, Oct 24, 2014

On comments, comment sections, and ROY G BIV.

More »
Comment
 
Introducing The Explicast: A New Podcast From On Point Radio
Friday, Oct 17, 2014

Confused about the news? Don’t worry: so are we sometimes! Introducing a new On Point Radio podcast: The Explicast. You can find Episode One right here.

More »
3 Comments