One of the primary goals of our site Influence Explorer is to show users a wide variety of influence data on one page. Today we're expanding the scope of influence data by integrating with three important Sunlight projects: Party Time, Lobbying Registration Tracker and OpenCongress. Along with integration with these sites we're also including new data from our partner organization, Center for Responsive Politics, that gives a far more accurate picture of the campaign donations of registered lobbyists.
- Party Time is a site that tracks invitations to fundraising events. It's a unique glimpse into the day to day realities of funding a congressional campaign. A new table on the Politician page shows recent and upcoming events for that politician. If you follow the link to the Party Time site you can see scans of the actual invitations.
The Lobbying Registration Tracker publishes notices of new lobbying contracts, often within a week or two of the contract beginning. This gives a much more current view of lobbying activity than the full disclosure reports, which can only be updated after quarterly filings are released.
The new Bills table provides a list of the actual bills that are lobbied on. Links lead to OpenCongress, which provides extensive information on the content of the bill and the votes and legislative actions on the bill.
Finally, individual lobbyists have been painstakingly matched to their 2010 campaign contributions. Lobbyists' pages will now show far more donations, giving a fuller picture of the power of lobbying. Many thanks to Larry Makinson, of the Sunlight Foundation and Center for Responsive Politics, for this volunteer effort.
As always, we'd love to hear your feedback on the additions to the site. You can leave a comment on this blog post or use the contact form on Influence Explorer to post to our public support forum.