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News from the Reference Desk

Counting Campaign Dollars

The Federal Election Commission (FEC) administers and enforces the Federal Election Campaign Act (FECA) – the statute that governs the financing of federal elections. The FEC is an independent regulatory agency and is assigned to disclose campaign finance information, to enforce the provisions of the law such as the limits and prohibitions on contributions, and to oversee the public funding of Presidential elections.

You can retrieve detailed lists of contributors based on type (individual or organization) and search for summary financial information about candidate campaigns, party committees, and other political committees.

Among thousands of data tables in the Campaign Finance Disclosure Portal is the Table of Contribution Limits 2011-2012

Historical data is available from the FEC’s Public Records Office (800) 424-9530 (press 2 when prompted) or e-mail

By Patricia Smolin on September 19, 2012 Categories: Economic, Elections, Finance, Voter Info

Interested in State Spending?

The Illinois comptroller’s office has launched a data website that gives users a daily snapshot of the state’s finances, employee salaries and contracts.
Comptroller Judy Baar Topinka unveiled what her office calls “The Ledger” on Monday. She says it’s a user-friendly site that sets a new standard for transparency.
Topinka says much of the information on the new site was already available online, but it hasn’t been pulled together in one place or hasn’t been complete

By Patricia Smolin on April 19, 2012 Categories: Consumer, Finance, Voter Info

Voting for Judges

A new tool has come to our attention – This site stresses the importance of doing some background research the judges we cast our votes for, their impact and records.  The bar groups who participate in the evaluation of judicial candidates have reviewed some of each candidate’s legal work, talked to other lawyers and judges about the candidates, and had the opportunity to interview each candidate. For judicial evaluation results from the Alliance, please CLICK HERE.

By Patricia Smolin on March 30, 2012 Categories: Elections, Voter Info

Voting Information for February 2, 2010 Primary Election

The Cook County Clerk has a new website to provide voter information including sample ballots, polling places and verification of registration: Elections-Suburban Cook County. Specific voter information can be searched by address or birthday/last 4 digits of SSN/Illinois Driver's License number or State I.D. number.

By MPPL on January 21, 2010 Categories: Elections, Voter Info