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How shadowy organizations creeped into American politics

The United States Capitol Building at night.
John Greim
LightRocket / via Getty Images
The United States Capitol Building at night.

You don't have to live and breathe politics to know about the NRA or Planned Parenthood. These organizations influence our democracy in big and small ways, and they’re pretty public about it.

But what about those organizations that operate more in the shadows? Sometimes these organizations have just as much influence as the household names.

So why don’t we know about them, and what do they mean for our democracy? This hour, we investigate some of these shadowy organizations. Plus, we’ll zoom in on an organization targeting both LGBTQ+ and abortion rights in the U.S. today.


The Wheelhouse is available as a podcast on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Google Podcasts, Amazon Music, TuneIn, Listen Notes, or wherever you get your podcasts. Subscribe and never miss an episode.

Frankie Graziano’s career in broadcast journalism continues to evolve.
Meg Dalton is the deputy director of storytelling for Connecticut Public. She previously worked for The Takeaway from WNYC, in collaboration with GBH and PRX, and Mobituaries with Mo Rocca. She's also reported and edited for the Columbia Journalism Review, PBS NewsHour, Slate, MediaShift, Hearst Connecticut newspapers, and more. Her audio work has appeared on ‎WNYC, WSHU, Marketplace, WBAI, and NPR. She earned her master's degree from Columbia Journalism School in 2017, where she specialized in audio storytelling and narrative writing, and has taught audio storytelling at Columbia Journalism School, UnionDocs, and public libraries.