Spotlight on Congress

MapLight research on the influence of money and politics in U.S. Congress.

Senators Voting Yes on Syria Resolution Received 83% More Money From Defense Industry


September 5, 2013The Senate Foreign Relations Committee voted 10-7 yesterday to approve a resolution authorizing the President to use military force in Syria. The resolution would allow the President to use the Armed Forces of the United States in Syria "as he determines to be necessary and appropriate in a limited and specified manner."

How much money have members of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee received from defense contractors and other defense interests?

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!

House Members Voting to Continue NSA's Dragnet Surveillance Received Twice as Much From Defense Contractors

Representative Justin Amash, R-Mich.
Gage Skidmore/Flickr

July 27, 2013As much as 70 percent of the money appropriated to the NSA by Congress is used to pay private defense companies to conduct intelligence operations, though the details of the NSA's budget and contracts with private companies are classified. Federal budget experts estimate the NSA's budget to be somewhere between $10 billion to $20 billion per year.

How much money have House members voting to continue NSA surveillance received from defense contractors?

Dave McKinley, A Top Recipient of Coal Money, Pushes Coal Ash Deregulation Bill to a Vote


July 23, 2013The House of Representatives is scheduled to vote this week on a bipartisan bill, introduced by Rep. David McKinley, R-W.Va., that would limit the Environmental Protection Agency's authority to regulate the management and disposal of coal ash. The bill would allow each state to implement and enforce its own coal ash disposal programs.

How much money has McKinley received from the coal and electric utilities industries?

What Does John Boehner Have to Lose by Debating Climate Change?

Speaker John Boehner/Flickr

July 18, 2013Twenty-two members of the House of Representatives recently sent a letter to Speaker John Boehner asking him to hold a debate on the House floor about the science of climate change. "As the nation's leading scientists have told us, climate change is one of the most serious threats we and future generations will confront," they wrote in the letter. "We therefore ask you and your Republican colleagues to debate us on the House floor about the dangers of climate change and the appropriate policy response."

How much money have members of the House, and Speaker Boehner in particular, received from carbon-emitting interests?