Kim Barker


Kim Barker was a reporter covering campaign finance and the aftermath of the BP oil spill; her stories have run in outlets such as The Washington Post, The Atlantic and Salon. She specialized in "dark money," or social welfare nonprofits that do not report their donors for election ads. In late 2009 and early 2010, Barker was the Edward R. Murrow Press Fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations in New York, where she studied, wrote and lectured on Pakistan and Afghanistan and U.S. policy. She was the South Asia bureau chief for the Chicago Tribune from 2004 to 2009 and was based in New Delhi and Islamabad. At the Tribune, Barker covered major stories such as the assassination of former Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto and rising militancy in both Pakistan and Afghanistan. Her book about those years, "The Taliban Shuffle: Strange Days in Afghanistan and Pakistan," was published by Doubleday in March 2011.

In Montana, Dark Money Helped Democrats Hold a Key Senate Seat

With control of the Senate at stake, liberals hit the streets and bought ads for a libertarian candidate who likely siphoned crucial votes away from the Republican challenger.

Karl Rove's Dark Money Group Promised IRS It Would Spend 'Limited' Money on Elections

Crossroads GPS, which has spent tens of millions from secret donors on elections, told the IRS in its 2010 application that its efforts would focus on education, policy-making and research.

Check ’Em Out: Donations to Dark Money Group Revealed

ProPublica and Frontline are putting checks written to Western Tradition Partnership online. Released under a court order last week, the records give a rare look inside the controversial dark money group.

Key Montana Senate Race Draws Deluge of Dark Money

More TV ads have been purchased in the race than in any other Senate contest in the country, including many paid for by outside money groups.

Dark Money Group’s Donors Revealed

Bank records released under a court order show that Western Tradition Partnership's donors included an Oklahoma businessman, a Colorado builder and other dark money groups linked to Ron Paul.

Dark Money Group's Bank Records Suggest Ties to Campaign Work

Bank records released Friday by aMontana district court judge show that the wife of a key player for WesternTradition Partnership signed many of the group's checks. She runs a companythat did work for candidates.

A Pop-Up Problem

By the time the Internal Revenue Service discovers that a group has crossed the line from nonprofit promotion to politicking, many operators have boarded up shop and moved on.

More Evidence Key Dark Money Group May Have Misled IRS

Western Tradition Partnership's alleged big donor said he had actually never heard of the group.

Documents Found in Meth House Bare Inner Workings of Dark Money Group

Boxes of records turned over to Montana authorities show that a top person from Western Tradition Partnership interacted with candidates and helped shape their election efforts, possibly violating laws that bar coordination between campaigns and outside groups.

Did the Dark Money Group that Spurred a Landmark Ruling Mislead the IRS?

A nonprofit group that filed a lawsuit that led the Supreme Court to apply its Citizens United decision to states told the IRS that it wouldn't intervene in elections – after it already had.

Dark Money Poured Into New Mexico Senate Contest

An analysis of newly available TV station political ad files shows how groups that don’t have to report their donors played a major role in one race for an open U.S. Senate seat

Flood of Secret Campaign Cash: It’s Not All Citizens United

The Internal Revenue Service, the Federal Elections Commission and Congress have all played a role in the emergence of undisclosed contributions in the 2012 elections.

No Tax Returns for You, Dark Money Groups Say

Some politically oriented social-welfare nonprofits dodged ProPublica’s requests for IRS filings or refused to provide them as required

Dark Money: Methodology

How we calculated the numbers in our Dark Money application.

How Nonprofits Spend Millions on Elections and Call it Public Welfare

Some tax-exempt groups underreported their political activities in 2010 to the IRS, ProPublica finds, using tactics that are being used to pour dark money into campaigns on an even larger scale this year.

How Some Nonprofit Groups Funnel Dark Money Into Campaigns

Explore how tax-exempt groups active in the 2010 election spent millions of dollars on campaigns, sometimes reporting less political spending to the Internal Revenue Service than they did to election officials.

Two Dark Money Groups Outspending All Super PACs Combined

Karl Rove's Crossroads GPS and Americans for Prosperity, a group backed by the Koch brothers, have put almost $60 million so far into ads to influence the presidential race, an analysis of new spending estimates shows.

Donations to Scott Walker Flagged as Potential Fraud

A woman in upstate New York is surprised to find a contribution to the Wisconsin governor's campaign on her credit card.

Read the Tax Returns From Karl Rove’s ‘Dark Money’ Group (Donors Still a Mystery)

The returns for nonprofit Crossroads GPS are the first glimpse of how much the group, which has spent millions on political ads, raised in 2010 and 2011.

The Return of CREEP

New FEC filings show 324 super PACs, including 159 with money and one named for the infamous fundraising committee embroiled in the Watergate scandal

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