Waning Commitment to Government Transparency Evident in Obama’s ‘State of the Union’ Speeches

By: Wednesday February 13, 2013 2:05 pm

Despite the stated commitments and professions on transparency, the Sunlight Foundation found talk of “government integrity, transparency, and influence” was mostly absent in President Obama’s “State of the Union” speech last night.

Congressional Floor Speeches Have Gotten “Dumber”

By: Monday May 21, 2012 3:30 pm

The way members of Congress speak in the official record has gotten significantly simpler according to a new analysis by the Sun Light Foundation. While the Constitution and Declaration were written at grade levels 15-17, today’s speeches come in at about grade level 10. Whocuddanode?

Corporations that Spent Big on Lobbying Saw Big Drops in Their Taxes

By: Wednesday April 18, 2012 11:00 am

The Sunlight Foundation looked at the eight companies that spent the most on lobbying and found that all of them saw their reported tax rates drop. This drop in tax rates effectively reduced the taxes the companies paid in 2010 by $11.2 billion.

Can Bulging War Chests Save Endangered Democrats in 2010?

By: Tuesday October 19, 2010 4:30 pm

An analysis earlier this year by Paul Blumenthal at the Sunlight Foundation found that, even in wave elections, incumbents who raise 70 percent of the total campaign contributions in their race almost never lost. It was also determined that, even in 1994, only one-third of incumbents that raise between 60 to 70 percent of the money in their races ended up losing.

If this pattern holds up, Democrats should be in better shape than generic ballot polling or political prognosticators indicate. There are currently nine incumbent Democrats who are ranked as “toss-up” or “likely to lose” who have raised 70 percent or more of the money in their race, and 18 Democrats who have raised between 60 and 70 percent of the total contributions in their races.

The Things Bob Bauer Was Doing Before Taking Over Ethics

By: Thursday August 12, 2010 8:20 am

I’ll leave it to the ethics wonks to decide whether Bauer can do the job — on ethics — well or not. But I am worried about what this says about the Administration’s focus on two other critically important functions. You see, when Bauer took over for Greg Craig, he was hailed as the kind of guy who could solve two problems Craig had failed to: judicial confirmations and closing Gitmo.

Poligraft Adds Level of Campaign Finance Analysis to News Articles

By: Saturday August 7, 2010 5:00 pm

The larger story here is really about the banks gouging the municipalities in often shocking ways. Michael Bennet is in a position to know a lot about that based on his DPS experience. He could speak out; but the web of contacts between Bennet and the FIRE sector could plausibly present problems for him in doing so. That’s what makes Sunlight’s Poligraft so powerful.

See-Through Turkey

By: Thursday November 26, 2009 2:30 pm

I noted last night that today is a good time to remember–and support–those food banks that help ensure that families that are struggling can enjoy a Thanksgiving Dinner, too.

It’s also a good time to reflect on how big and scary our food system has become. (Indeed, the industrialization of our food system may contribute to the rising number of Americans who struggle to get enough food.)

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