Do you want to know how special interests are influencing elected officials? Use this visualization to find out which groups are contributing the most to support or oppose bills and what impact that is having on elected officials. This visualization is based on the 2009-2010 election cycle.
Instructions: Use the controls in the upper left to select a party or legislator, and to select whether to compare contributions from specific contributors or types of interest groups. The top graph shows dollars donated, frequency of influence, and votes influenced (a vote is considered influenced if a contributor endorsed or opposed a bill, contributed to an elected official within 30 days of the vote for that bill, and the elected official voted in accordance with the contributor's preference). The bottom graphs shows contributions by month and allows you to explore contributions to particular bills by clicking the dot next to a bill's subject.
Sources: All data for this visualization is from http://maplight.org/california/legislator for contributions to elected officials within 30 days of votes on bills. Maplight collects this data by beginning with annual LegInfo reports on endorsements and oppositions for each bill. Then, Maplight cross references each interest group that took a stance on a bill with campaign contribution data from the National Institute on Money in Politics. Learn more about the data at http://maplight.org/california/guide/data.