‘Our Brand Is Crisis’ highlights Sunlight’s tools to follow the money


It’s not often that Sunlight and Sandra Bullock are mentioned together. (OK, honestly, it has never happened.) But that’s all changing now.

In theaters now, Our Brand Is Crisis, based on a documentary of the same name, is a satirical comedy that takes place around the Bolivian presidential election. The cast is loaded, including Sandra Bullock and Billy Bob Thornton, who play rival American campaign strategists aligned with different sides of the presidential race. In addition to revealing the cut-throat nature of a political campaign, it gives viewers a glimpse inside the influence of money on the electoral process.

In promoting the film, a branch of the film’s production company, TakePart, has been promoting Sunlight’s tools as a way for all citizens (and journalists!) to follow the money around federal elections here in the U.S. TakePart specifically has been highlighting:

1. Real-Time Campaign Finance tracker: A branch of our Influence Explorer tool, this campaign finance tracker allows anyone to search and analyze federal campaign finance data for candidates, PACs and outside spending groups like super PACs. It pulls data directly from the Federal Election Commission, so it always has up-to-the-minute information. 2. Political Party Time: From the early hours of the morning until late in the evening, politicians are breaking bread and sipping cocktails with big donors. A one-of-a-kind database, Party Time aggregates fundraising invitations for politicians and candidates across the country, allowing you to see who’s fundraising and where. 3. Political Ad Sleuth: Use this site to get the latest information on political ads purchased at TV stations around the country. These files provide the only information we have on who’s behind some of the shadowy groups pouring money into the election.

Sunlight is projecting an enormous amount of both money and ads in 2016 — these tools will help us hold candidates in both parties accountable.

Thanks to the folks at TakePart for the shout out! You can learn more about all of our tools to track influence and money on our tools page.