For The People Films Presents

2016: The Shadow Campaign

A team of reporters uncovers a secret playbook for winning the White House in 2016: thousands of internal documents that expose in vivid detail how one very high-profile presidential candidate cheated the system, circumvented campaign finance laws, used corporate funds to fuel their campaign, lied to the public and failed to disclose several secret business deals.


“What you have here is a blueprint for running a campaign off the books.  And that's illegal.”

-  Lawrence Noble, Former General Counsel,
Federal Election Commission

“Justice Department prosecutors need to examine these documents and open a criminal inquiry immediately."

- James J. Wedick, Retired Supervisory Agent, Federal Bureau of Investigation 

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"The lack of transparency is alarming.  Voters should be very concerned."

- Sheila Krumholz, Executive Director, Center for Responsive Politics

Meet the Team

Advisory Board

Tia Lessin

Tia Lessin

Academy Award-nominated filmmaker Tia Lessin is the director and producer, with Carl Deal, of Trouble the Water (winner of the Sundance Film Festival’s Grand Jury Prize, the Gotham Independent Film Award and the Full Frame Film Festival’s Grand Jury Prize) and of Citizen Koch which was shortlisted for the 2015 Oscars. 

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James Steele

James Steele

James B. Steele is one of America’s foremost investigative reporters.  He currently serves as a contributing editor to Vanity Fair magazine.  In 1971, Jim joined with fellow Philadelphia Inquirer journalist Don Barlett to form the most enduring and respected investigative reporting partnership in American journalism.  

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Keith Bowers

Keith Bowers

Keith Bowers has worked at a high level in television journalism since the early 1980s, including a 20-year-stint at the BBC. At one stage he was the executive in charge of all the BBC's international current affairs output on its various national and international radio and television outlets. 

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Mark Horvit

Mark Horvit

Mark Horvit is the executive director of Investigative Reporters & Editors. He oversees training, conferences and services for more than 5,000 members worldwide, and for programs including the National Institute of Computer-Assisted Reporting (NICAR) and DocumentCloud.

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Bill Buzenberg

Bill Buzenberg

Bill Buzenberg is one of America’s foremost journalism executives. During his 45-year career, Bill has served as executive director of the Pulitzer Prize-winning Center for Public Integrity, Vice President of NPR News, NPR foreign affairs correspondent, and head of news for Minnesota Public Radio / American Public Media.

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Cynthia Kane

Cynthia Kane

With UK partners at gbgg productions and Les Film de l’Après Midi, Producer Cynthia Kane executive-produced, New Eyes, a short narrative by Hiwot Admasu Getaneh which screened at the Venice, Toronto and Rotterdam Film Festivals. 

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"I'm not suggesting ____ is skirting the law.
I'm saying ____ is breaking the law."

- Paul Ryan, Deputy Executive Director, Campaign Legal Center

"People feel as if it's these casino magnates and big corporations that are buying these candidates."

- David Kolker, Former Chief of Litigation, Federal Election Commission

Our Supporters


Major funding for 2016: The Shadow Campaign provided by:


Don and Doris Shaffer Philanthropic Fund

Nathan Shaffer and Lauri Markowitz Fund


Additional support generously provided by:


  • Furat Abi
  • Judith Auberjonois
  • David Bailey
  • Julie Baker
  • Ellen Bernstein
  • Josh Bernstein
  • Mary Ellen Brennan
  • Kelly Felkins
  • Jason Ficklin
  • John Fike
  • Carol Haberberger
  • Yip Harburg Foundation
  • Ron Hawley
  • Delphine Hirsh
  • Uwe Jacobs
  • Debra Katz
  • Sara Katz
  • Marge Lasky
  • Dianna Lyons
  • Amy Mall
  • Jim & Anne McSilver
  • Jim Meredith
  • Richard Moore
  • Rachel Moriconi
  • Robert F. Nichols
  • Suzette Noden
  • Julia Pinsky
  • Brian Ramos
  • Angel Raudner
  • Eric Rheinheimer
  • Michael Rufo
  • Pat Sax
  • Mindy Scharlin
  • Sara Schnell
  • Matt Schrader
  • Jonathan Shaffer
  • Robert Shaffer
  • David Shaffer
  • Susan Siegel
  • Hedrick Smith
  • David Straker
  • Wayne Triplett
  • Stephanie Tripp
  • James Wedick
  • Wade Westhoff
  • Sheri Wong
  • Craig Wood

“Money is speech if you have lot of it. Money isn’t speech to folks without any money.”

- Paul Ryan, Deputy Executive Director, the Campaign Legal Center

“We don’t have enough spending in elections. Even though we had a substantial victory in Citizens United… the work still isn’t done.”

- James Bopp, Citizens United lawyer

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