There is no greater time than this, to be politically aware. As another election year approaches, muddling through the soundbites, campaign promises and attack ads can be made easier with the help of these pro-transparency resources.
Have you ever wanted to know just how much a certain campaign has raised or spent? Which political race your neighbors contribute to? This online database allows anyone to find information regarding the activity of political figures and their associated campaigns. The data used and presented comes from the Federal Action Committee and allows for citizens to be knowledgeable of political donations from anyone as well as any political action committee’s activities.
Up until May of 2015, Politwoops created a public record of the tweets elected government officials and candidates posted and later deleted. Daily, tweets by members of Congress, representatives, of any other government branch were posted to their website. The three-year support from Twitter ended due to an undisclosed dispute. Not to worry; the Sunlight Foundation still has the site available with tweets up until May of this year as well as other apps like Follow the Unlimited Money, Churnalism, and Influence Explorer that aid in the goal of creating a more accountable government.
Deleted tweet and photo from (R)Ted Cruz
We’ve all heard of political leaders vowing to keep their promises of tax cuts or new laws. Usually heard during their campaign trail, by the time voting season comes back around, it’s difficult to remember what their promises were and if they really did keep their word. Politifact was created for this exact purpose. The website serves as way of reporting results of fact-checking and flip-flopping. This new kind of journalism forces public figures to be careful with their pronouncements and keep a level of honesty with the public.
Donald Trump’s recent fact-checked statements
A more transparent and accountable government is a goal many are in support of. This is especially important for new millennials voting for the first time next fall. Biased information in our multi-source world can be tricky to maneuver, but luckily, these user-friendly resources are available to help.