Dark money donations fuel ads meant to influence voters; lawmaker fights to keep donors secret - WXYZ.com:
"LANSING, Mich. (WXYZ) - This election season, donors are shelling out millions of dollars to help produce ads designed to sway you, startle you and, most importantly, influence your vote.
While the intent of the ads are clear, the men and women paying for them is anything but.
"It is a license to corruption," says Rich Robinson, Executive Director of the Michigan Campaign Finance Network.
In Michigan, "issue ads" are given special protection under the law.
These commercials don’t explicitly tell you who to vote for, but they are designed to make you feel a certain way about a candidate and influence your vote.
When he was a candidate for Governor, Rick Snyder said this kind of “dark” money is dangerous because it conceals who’s “...trying to influence policy and for what reasons.”
"It’s a way to influence an election, without pretty much anyone knowing?" asked Channel 7's Ross Jones.
"That’s right, that’s right," Robinson said.
Secrecy, says Robinson, is the big appeal to donors, some of whom write checks totaling millions. While you can find out if someone seeking a contract or favorable law wrote a check to a politician’s campaign, you won't know who gives to these groups.
Since 2006, they've flooded Michigan airwaves with nearly $70 million in ads..."