If you are familiar with how to find information about influences on public policy, you can skip this section.
|Lobby groups exercise influence on public
both through committee hearings and by talking directly with Members.
Committees do the bulk of work on prospective legislation, and are a major target for lobbyists.
|Many sources describe committee membership and
jurisdiction. Among them is the Congressional Yellowbook,
which is easy to use, but lags about three months at the beginning of a
Its call number is: JK1083.C75, and it is located in the Documents Center.
|Historical data on committee membership can be found in the Official Congressional Directory since 1996.
|The Contacting the Congress has the current committee assignments.
|To get member information you may need to mix and match directories, biographies, and campaign finance sources.
|The Congressional Yellow Book lists the committee assignments and staff for Members of Congress
|There are a number of current sites on the Web.
|There are lots of Web sites that give biographies, with new ones appearing every day.
|The Almanac of American Politics is well-known
political biographies, descriptions of Congressional districts, lobby group
ratings, and key votes.
Its call number is: JK1012.A44, and it is located in the Documents Center. A web version of the Almanac of American Politics is also available to University of Michigan users.
|A rival source is the Politics in America,
covers very similar information but also includes party unity data.
Its call number is: JK1010.P76, and it is located in the Documents Center.
|A good paper source is called Open Secrets. It
campaign finances by interest group.
Its call number is: JK1991.M261, and it is located in the Documents Center.
Open Secrets has a searchable database for the 2002 elections and additional data for elections beginning 1996.
|FEC Info has campaign finance data beginning with the 1993 elections to the present. Additional sources provide summary information.
| Many of these
are available on the Web.
One example is the League of Conservation Voters.
Last updated: 22 July 2003 [an error occurred while processing this directive]