Stories

The IRE Resource Center is a major research library containing more than 27,000 investigative stories.

Most of our stories are not available for download but can be easily ordered by contacting the Resource Center directly at 573-882-3364 or [email protected] where a researcher can help you pinpoint what you need.

Search results for "politics" ...

  • All Politics Is Racial

    “All Politics Is Racial” is a thorough examination of the first mayoral term of James McGee, the town of Vinita Park's first black mayor. His election – which he was accused of stealing -- was a direct reflection of 60 years worth of larger economic and societal forces at work in the north St. Louis County region. By the time I began my reporting there, the city had already paid out three-quarters of $1 million to a group of fired, white police officers who say they were run out of the town's tiny department and replaced with black officers. Additional lawsuits – including one for sexual harassment -- are pending. Through extensive interviews and document searches, I attempted to piece together what is really going on in this tiny hamlet.
  • How Washington Starves Its Election Watchdog

    Born in the Watergate scandal’s ashes, Congress created the Federal Election Commission as a bulwark against political corruption and champion of transparency and disclosure. But a six-month investigation by the Center for Public Integrity, "How Washington Starves Its Election Watchdog," showed the agency is so fractured by partisan politicking and bereft with staffing and funding woes that it is “rotting from the inside out.”
  • Outdoors grant investigation

    The investigation detailed how a handful of political insiders engineered a $500,000 hunting and fishing grant in perpetuity for some of their friends and political supporters. The taxpayer-funded grant from the state of Wisconsin went for teaching and promoting the sports of hunting and fishing, but the newly created receiving organization, the United Sportsmen, didn’t have any experience doing that work. Instead, the group had been doing political work and lobbying, often for goals at odds with those of some other outdoors groups, such as supporting a massive proposed pit mine in an area used by hunters and anglers. In spite of that, lawmakers wrote the grant qualifications to exclude more experienced groups and target their ally, which had the support of one of the state’s wealthiest and most influential campaign donors. In doing so, the lawmakers knowingly but surreptitiously put at risk millions of dollars in federal conservation funds for Wisconsin.
  • There Will Be Diatomaceous!

    In this series of coverage, Mission and State looks at Santa Barbara’s love-hate relationship with oil. As the country dives deeper and deeper into the enhanced-extraction oil boom, Santa Barbara grapples with what to do with the vast oil reserves waiting to be tapped in the North County and offshore. These stories delve into the fractured local oil politics, the strange bedfellows oil development can make of environmentalists, oil companies and politicians, the environmental and developmental legacies informing current debates, the missed opportunities for environmental concessions and the campaign contributions putting politicians in compromising positions. These stories paint the picture of a county in an almost schizophrenic political and cultural dance with itself. During the course of researching and reporting this series, it was revealed that Air Pollution Control District advisory board member and Lompoc City Councilmember Ashley Costa also worked in public relations for Santa Maria Energy, an obvious conflict of interest. Reporter Karen Pelland discovered that the president of a company proposing to slant drill from Vandenberg Air Force Base to get to the vast Tranquillon Ridge offshore reserve made significant political contributions to now-Congressman John Garamendi (D-Walnut Creek). Garamendi had previously scuttled a deal between environmentalists and PXP oil company for the same reserve that was hailed as a landmark proposal at the time.
  • California's Deloitte Dilemma: The Politics of Programming and Public Contracts. A KCRA Investigation

    When payments for California's unemployed were delayed after a computer upgrade, KCRA began digging into the cause of the delay. What reporter Sharokina Shams and producer Dave Manoucheri found was a state agency that was downplaying the problems with their new computer system and grossly under-reporting the number of people affected. Utilizing California Public Records Act requests (similar to FOIA) and whistleblowers inside the department, KCRA exposed the fact that California had purchased a computer system plagued with problems. Within a week they had determined that multiple states had hired the same company, Deloitte, LLC, and those states were experiencing similar problems. With more digging Shams and Manoucheri found that Deloitte had also donated hundreds of thousands to political campaigns and lobbied heavily with the state. KCRA found hundreds of millions paid to the company for IT contracts, failed previous projects and a new contract due to be awarded that would costs half a billion dollars. Ultimately, KCRA's investigation led to legislative hearings, the creation of legislation to change how the state writes IT contracts, and revealed that more than 40 states are waiting in the wings to upgrade their computer systems and the federal Department of Labor anticipates similar problems in all those states.
  • Bidness as Usual

    The Texas Tribune spent more than a year documenting the conflicts and interests of the state's elected officials, who have gone to great lengths to avoid making any improvements to Texas' ethics and reporting rules, which date back four decades. In addition to producing more than 50 stories, the Tribune rolled out a comprehensive and well-researched data interactive that outlines the personal interests and relationships of every elected official in Texas, in addition to putting all of their financial records online for the very first time.
  • Living Apart: Fair Housing in America

    The series documents 45 years of neglect of one of the most sweeping civil rights laws in our country’s history. The investigation found that the federal government made a decision almost immediately after the passage of the 1968 Fair Housing Act not to enforce the key provisions of the law, including the mandate to promote residential integration. The stories and maps reveal how politics hobbled the reach of the law, severely limiting both the resources and the will of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development to use its vast powers to force communities to undue decades of government-sanctioned segregation. It showed how HUD has from its roots been an agency conflicted about enforcing the law and how those charged with enforcement are undertrained and often maligned within the agency. As a result of the law’s neglect by a succession of Republican and Democratic Administrations, our investigation found that segregation patterns in the cities with the largest proportion of black residents have barely budged.
  • Secrecy for Sale: Inside the Global Offshore Money Maze (Offshore Leaks)

    Secrecy for Sale made front page news around the globe, including in the U.K., the United States, Switzerland, Germany, France, China, and Russia. Also known as the “Offshore Leaks” investigation, it sparked official investigations around Europe, Asia, Australia, and in North and South America, and several high-profile resignations. It prompted the French president to call for the eradication of tax havens, the UK prime minister to announce—alongside the U.S. President—that the two nations had agreed to “tackle the scourge of tax havens,” and EU officials to say it “transformed” tax politics in Europe. The International Consortium of Investigative Journalists, a project of the Center for Public Integrity, struck a blow for transparency against one of the world’s most important and contentious public issues—tax havens and the illicit flow of money around the globe.
  • The Political 1% of the 1% in 2012

    In the 2012 Election 28 percent of all disclosed political contributions came from just 31,385 people. These donors represent the "1% of the 1%," an elite class that increasingly serves as the gatekeepers of public office in the United States. Our analysis covers who these wealthy donors are, how they impact every congressional seat and where states ranks among this group of political donors. Only have three minutes? Watch a video about the 1% of the 1% story here: http://youtu.be/042xZQZPZjU
  • Confirmation of 10 groups of Twitter accounts allegedly used by spy agents to meddle in politics

    The stories are among a series of investigative reports that have been conducted by Newstapa, also known as Korea Center for Investigative Journalism, since March 1 this year to reveal suspicions about the spy agency’s involvement in the presidential election of 2012. With the use of a social web analysis tool, Newstapa disclosed some 600 Twitter accounts suspected to be related to the spy agency. After studying Social Network Analysis of 280,000 Twitter postings, it revealed that at least 10 groups systematically operated on Twitter. The in-depth reporting exploited social science research methods to disclose the involvement of South Korea’s highest-level intelligence agency, which is banned from political meddling, in the presidential election of 2012. The findings of the reports have been confirmed to be true by prosecutors’ investigations.