New Website Puts “Sunshine” On Political Donations

 

Supreme Court Justice Louis Brandeis once wrote that “sunlight is said to be the best of disinfectants.” That’s the motivation behind a new website created by the Illinois Campaign for Political Reform that provides searchable information on political campaign contributions in the state.


Morning Edition Host Brian Moline spoke with ICPR's Deputy Director, Sarah Brune, about the new website illinoissunshine.org.  Brune says political contributions tell an important story.

"People in politics know that all of these contributions and expenditures tell a story," Brune said, "and it's a story voters need to know."

She says the data at illinoissunshine.org has previously been available online, but that it wasn't user friendly.

"Currently this information exists on the Illinois State Board of Elections site, but that database can be difficult to use," Brune said.  "We wanted to create something that had a simple search bar, where you can do a search by candidate name or committee name."

The data can also be sorted by timeframe, so users can see which candidates and committees have received the most money in any given day, week, month, or year.

"We've gotten feedback not only on the design of the database," Brune said, "but on Illinois campaign finance law in general."

Story source: WILL