Monday, August 21, 2006

Who has money and where did they get it?

ICPR has answers.

The “go to” web site for information about who is funding political campaigns in Illinois just got a whole lot better.

The Sunshine Database at the Illinois Campaign for Political Reform has been updated with new research about major contributors and thousands of new contributions made this year to the statewide candidates, as well as the candidates for legislatives seats and the judiciary.

Here is just some of the new information you’ll find at
• The identity of the biggest contributors in the political careers of Gov. Rod Blagojevich, Treasurer Judy Baar Topinka and all other top state officeholders and their challengers. The top 13 contributors to Topinka combined don’t even match the $1.7 million given by Blagojevich’s number one career patron.
• Names and background information on the people who have given the largest amounts of money to candidates in this election cycle. Frederick A. Krehbiel, who fell off the Forbes magazine list of the nation’s 400 wealthiest citizens, is at the top of the list of the top individual campaign contributors in Illinois.
• The most generous special interest lobbies – labor unions, law firms, and associations lobbying Springfield for hospitals, doctors, phone companies, beer distributors, horse racetracks, cable television and more.
• The candidates who spent the largest amounts of their personal funds on election campaigns this year. Only three of the top 10 won their primary elections.

The Sunshine Database is a powerful search tool providing information about the most powerful people and special interests in Illinois. It is the only database that has standardized the names of all donors to Illinois candidates, and the only one to code receipts and expenditures by industry.

The Illinois Campaign for Political Reform is a non-profit, non-partisan public interest organization conducting research and advocating reforms to promote public participation in government, address the role of money in politics and encourage integrity, accountability and transparency in government. The late U.S. Sen. Paul Simon founded ICPR in 1997.

The Sunshine Project is based at the University of Illinois at Springfield and is funded by the Joyce Foundation. Its goal is to increase public awareness and understanding of the role of money in Illinois politics.

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