Here at the Reporting Group, we’ve always wanted to tie the fundraising invitations in our Party Time database to actual donations reported to the Federal Election Commission by a politician or a political action committee--to be able to show a donor gave money to a politician at a certain event.
It’s nearly impossible, and there's a number of reasons we can't--not least of which is that dates in FEC records don't necessarily correspond to the day a contribution was given. (See here for an explanation.) Even when there's a disclosure intended to shed light ...
The current economic crisis does seem to present a combination of circumstances (the housing crisis, a credit crisis, declining international trade, rising unemployment), some of which are causes, some of which are symptoms, none of which--of course--are particularly pleasant for those going through them. So how does Congress, legislatively, address new circumstances? Do members and their staffs (and the lobbyists whispering in their ears) craft bills to solve the problems at hand? Or do they go through their archives and relabel old bills as solutions to new problems?
Using the indispensable Govtrack.us, I'm going to look for antecedents ...Continue reading