Sunlight Blog Year in Review – Top Blog Posts of the Year


We blogged, you came, you read it. These are the top ten Sunlight blog posts of the last year based on page views.

1. 2008 was the year of bailout-mania. No surprise that John Wonderlich’s post, “New Bailout Bill in Senate,” announced the release of the Senate’s bailout bill became the most viewed blog post on our site.

2. Bill Allison’s post “Holes in Disclosure,” helped to highlight the failure of Congress to require the disclosure of personal residences on personal financial disclosure forms. It just so happens that Charles Rangel, Chris Dodd, and Kent Conrad all came under scrutiny for dealings related to their personal residences. Fancy that!

3. Continuing with the bailout theme, after the House initially rejected the bailout the Senate came back three days later with a new bill that included 351 new pages. What was in those new pages? I took a look at all the added goodies in the very literally titled post, “The Other Provisions in the Senate Bailout Bill.”

4. The Blag-Oy-Vey scandal (don’t make me say Blagogate) was another huge story. My post, “Who Are the Senate Candidates 1-5?,” examined the identities of the unnamed “Senate Candidates” in Patrick Fitzgerald’s criminal complaint against Gov. Rod Blagojevich and his chief of staff.

5. The recommendations made by sundry Sunlight staff members to the incoming Obama Administration in the post, “Open Letter to the Obama Administration on How to Shine Sunlight,” clocks in at number five.

6. The controversy that presages the Let Our Congress Tweet! campaign was explained by John Wonderlich in his post, “Member Web Use Reconsidered.” Here’s one post that started a very successful campaign to change Congress’ rules for the better. Huzzah!

7. Ellen Miller’s post, “Finance Industry Giving Visualized,” presented a visualization of campaign contributions from the finance industry that was created by Larry Makinson. The visualization is an amazing way to see how the campaign giving tracked with the boom (of fake money) on Wall Street.

8. Our Labs team spent a lot of time parsing the bailout bills to put them onto John Wonderlich’s post, “Senate Bailout Text on PublicMarkup,” announced the posting of the 451-page bill to the site for comment and review.

9. John Wonderlich tracked how the bailout bill grew from 3 to 110 to 451 pages over the course of a few days and pondered what kind of bill versioning software or technique would be required to help the public track bill changes online in his post, “Versioning on Paper.”

10. Give Sunlight some props. We knew about the convention parties and we let you know where they were. We’re cool, I promise. Bill Allison, in his post “Unofficial Schedules for Nominating Conventions List 370 Events for Pols, Insiders,” announced the release of a list of 370 unofficial convention parties for both the Democratic and Republican National Conventions where politicians were feted with music, food, booze, and treats by insiders and lobbyists.

Well, those are the posts that you the viewer liked to read and/or link to. If you enjoyed any of our other coverage or posts feel free to let us know in the comments. Or tell us what we should be covering in the New Year. Happy Holidays! And have a Happy New Year!