Travis Ridout
Travis Ridout

With midterm elections weeks away, outside interest groups are pumping a record amount of anonymous “dark money” into television political ads, according to a WSU researcher who tracks national campaign advertising.

“I suspect the numbers will go up even more during the crucial weeks leading up to Nov. 4,” said WSU political scientist Travis Ridout, co-director of the Wesleyan Media Project, which recently released a report showing a surge of political spending, mostly on highly contested U.S. Congressional seats. (See Wesleyan Media Project)

Not only is a lot of money being spent on broadcast ads, but it’s frequently being done in secret, said Ridout. Unlike candidates and political action committees, dark money groups—those able to claim tax status as social welfare organizations—can keep individual contributors anonymous.

Find out more about the nature of dark money:

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