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January 04, 2016

Opinion: 2016 Shaping Up as a Big Year for 'Dark Money'

Presidential politics and congressional action are further opening the floodgates for "dark money" from nonprofit groups to flow into this year's campaigns, a Bloomberg View columnist writes. Albert R. Hunt says "social welfare" organizations are being utilized as never before to finance ads on behalf of White House hopefuls, most notably Republican Marco Rubio.

Campaign watchdogs say such groups, which are not required to disclose donors, will considerably exceed the $300 million they spent in the 2012 race, courting interest groups and wealthy contributors with a promise of anonymous influence, according to Mr. Hunt. He writes that congressional Republicans have blocked regulation of dark money, inserting language in the government-funding bill passed late last year that bars the Internal Revenue Service from drafting new rules on electioneering by tax-exempt groups.