PRESS RELEASE: New California Website Tracks $189M Given to California Lawmakers

May 4, 2010 – The river of money that funds California lawmakers’ campaigns is revealed in a new website, California, launched today. The site makes it easy to find who is paying the bills for your legislators' campaigns at

The new website includes $189 million in campaign contributions to current members of the California Assembly and Senate, from January 1, 2003 to March 17, 2010. (Video tour - 3 minutes) (Live demos) uses campaign contribution data from the National Institute on Money in State Politics, based on information candidates are required to report to the California Secretary of State.

On the new site you can:

  • Search by interest. As California legislators conduct hearings in May on a proposed soft drink tax, you’ll find that the top recipient of money from non-alcoholic beverage interests was Senator Gloria Negrete McLeod, who received $17,770 over the last four years.
  • Search by legislator. Did you know that Assembly Speaker John A. Pérez received $1.5 million in campaign contributions in the last two years? The top organizations contributing to his campaign were the California Medical Association and the California State Pipe Trades Council. Senator Darrell Steinberg, Senate President Pro Tempore, received $2.7 million in campaign contributions. His top contributors are AT&T and the California State Council of Service Employees. Who is funding your local legislator’s campaigns?
  • Search by companyand organization. Mercury General Corporation, an insurance company backing Proposition 17 on the June ballot, is also a regular contributor to many legislators. Mercury General gave $212,300 since 2003 to state legislators in the 2009-2010 session.

A graphical interface of the state of California takes you immediately to each Senate and Assembly representative by district, where you can instantly see a legislator's total campaign contributions received, along with donors and amounts received by interest and organization.

The flood of money documented on the new site is one reason the League of Women Voters, Common Cause and other groups are supporting Proposition 15, the California Fair Elections Act, on the June 8 ballot.

About MapLight: MapLight is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit, nonpartisan research organization that reveals money's influence on politics. If our work has been helpful to you, please consider supporting us.