A new Web site, OpenCongress, draws on a variety of sources — from official government sites to blogs — to provide an in-depth view of “the real story behind what’s happening in Congress.” A joint project of the Sunlight Foundation and the Participatory Politics Foundation, the site allows you to track official legislative information as well as news reports, blog posts, campaign contribution information, and other sources. Use it to track a bill, a member of Congress, a specific issue or just to follow the latest developments on Capitol Hill.
Specifically, OpenCongress tracks:
- Official information from Thomas, made available by way of GovTrack.us (which I covered here), including all bills, members of Congress, votes, committee reports, issue areas and more.
- News articles about Congress from Google News.
- Blog posts about Congress from Technorati and Google Blog Search.
- Campaign contribution information from OpenSecrets.org.
The site allows you to see up RSS feeds for virtually anything you want to track — including a single bill, a member of Congress or blog posts about a bill. You can also track what is hot in Congress by subscribing to feeds for most-viewed items. A separate issues page lets you monitor Congressional activity by topics. You can also link to a specific page for each bill, useful if you write about a bill on a blog or Web page.