Spotlight on California

MapLight research on the influence of money and politics in California.

The Cost of a Seat in the California State Legislature


December 12, 2013It costs a lot of money to win a seat in the California State Legislature, but how much exactly? MapLight has conducted an analysis of money raised by members of the California State Legislature who won election in 2012.

MapLight Launches Tool to Easily Search California Secretary of State Campaign Finance Data

August 28, 2013—MapLight announces the launch of a web tool that allows journalists and citizens to easily search the California Secretary of State's newly released bulk data to find campaign contributions to candidates and ballot committees.

Click here to try it!

Washington State GMO Labeling Initiative is Round Two for CA Prop. 37 Donors

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July 19, 2013The similarities between California's Prop. 37 and Washington's I-522, "The People's Right to Know Genetically Engineered Food Act," go beyond titles and even beyond content: I-522 has many of the same moneyed supporters that fueled the Prop. 37 campaign, as well as some of the same opponents as those that helped defeat it.

What groups have contributed to both campaigns?

CA Prop. 8's Top 10 Supporting and Opposing Contributors

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June 26, 2013The Supreme Court ruled to overturn California's Proposition 8, a ballot initiative passed in 2008 that restricted legal marriage to opposite-sex couples.

Where did the money fighting for and against Prop. 8 come from?

California Passes Only a Fraction of Its Fracking Bills



June 13, 2013Of almost a dozen fracking bills introduced over the course of this legislative session, only two survived, three were rejected, and the rest died in committee.  The only bill proposing a "moratorium" on fracking until regulation was in place was voted out.

How does the money, in the form of campaign contributions, line up on which bills passed and which bills failed?