The National Institute on Money in State Politics (FollowTheMoney.org) is the only nonpartisan, nonprofit organization revealing the influence of campaign money on state-level elections and public policy in all 50 states. We encourage transparency and promote independent investigation of state-level campaign contributions by journalists, academic researchers, public-interest groups, government agencies, policymakers, students and the public at large.
Prior to becoming Executive Director of the Institute, I worked for seven years as Research Director for the Money in Western Politics Project of the Western States Center. While there, I helped develop many techniques for researching state campaign-finance data.
Looking at campaign contributions can inform how you report a story. Check out this post from FollowTheMoney.org.
A California state senator is trying to keep employers from charging more for health care if employees don’t meet certain workplace wellness program health goals. FollowTheMoney.org looks at what organizations have made political donations to legislators voting on the bill in committee.
California is not the only state considering whether or not to tackle the doctor shortage problem by broadening the scope of what services other providers can offer. How are special interest groups weighing in on the debate with political donations?
According to the FollowTheMoney.org, the food and beverage industry contributed $5.3 million to state campaigns in California during the 2011 and 2012 elections. Find out how to investigate political contributions of all kinds in other states.
Reporting on genetically modified organisms bills in your state? Here's some helpful tips for following the money trail of political donations.
California sits atop an enormous shale deposit, raising the prospect of significant fracking activity. State regulators and lawmakers are looking to adopt new regulations. How much financial muscle is the oil and natural gas industry flexing in the decision being made about fracking in California?
How much did the tobacco industry give to state candidates, committees, and ballot measures during the 2012 election cycle?
California’s so-called “Human Right to Water package” is a group of bills that would expand efforts to improve water quality in California. Who's behind the lobbying for these bills, and what money is involved?
<p><span style="font-size: 15px; font-family: Arial; color: #000000; background-color: transparent; font-weight: bold; font-style: normal; font-variant: normal; text-decoration: none; vertical-align: baseline;"></span>Efforts by California health advocates to ban the sale of sugary sports drinks during the school day on middle and high school campuses were recently thwarted.</p>
<p><span style="font-size: 15px; font-family: Arial; color: #000000; background-color: transparent; font-weight: normal; font-style: normal; font-variant: normal; text-decoration: none; vertical-align: baseline;"></span>Tips for following the money trail of vaccine exemption legislation in your state.</p>