BERKELEY, CA, July 22, 2010–An analysis by MAPLight.org, a nonpartisan, nonprofit research organization, found that interest groups supporting HR 4213, the unemployment benefits bill, gave, on average, $42,687 to members of the House voting ‘Yes’ compared to $13,586 to members voting ‘No,’ or three times more. Interest groups opposing the bill gave, on average, $26,239 to ‘No’ votes and $20,549 to ‘Yes’ votes.

Labor unions in support of the measure gave House members voting ‘Yes,’ on average, $22,720, or 12 times more, compared to members voting ‘No,’ who received $1,837.

Votes and Money on Unemployment Benefits Bill for each House Member

votes-money-unemployment-benefits-bill

Click here for full list.

Contributions data provided by the Center for Responsive Politics (OpenSecrets.org). Legislative data is fromGovTrack.us.

MAPLight.org’s research department reveals how contributions correlate with legislation so that citizens have key information needed to draw their own conclusions about how campaign contributions affect policy. Campaign contributions are only one factor affecting legislator behavior. The correlations we highlight between industry and union giving and legislative outcomes do not show that one caused the other, and we do not make this claim. We do make the claim, however, that campaign contributions bias our legislative system. Simply put, candidates who take positions contrary to industry interests are unlikely to receive industry funds and thus have fewer resources for their election campaigns than those whose votes favor industry interests.

Editor’s note: To interview Daniel Newman, MAPLight.org’s executive director, contact Pamela Heisey, 415.299.0898 or pamela@maplight.org.

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About MAPLight.org:
MAPLight.org is a nonpartisan, nonprofit, 501(c)(3) organization based in Berkeley, California. Its mission is to illuminate the connection between Money and Politics (MAP) using our groundbreaking database of campaign contributions and legislative votes. MAPLight.org combines data from the Federal Election Commission, the Center for Responsive Politics, GovTrack.us, the National Institute on Money in State Politics (NIMSP), the Los Angeles City Ethics Commission and other sources to better inform Americans and local and national media about the role of special-interest money in our political system. Hundreds of newspapers, TV stations, radio shows and online news sites have cited MAPLight.org’s research, including CNN, the public radio show Marketplace, Harper’s, The Washington Post, and Reuters.

MAPLight.org has received numerous awards including a Knight-Batten Award for Innovations in Journalism; a James Madison Freedom of Information Award from the Society of Professional Journalists, Northern California Chapter and a Webby nomination for best Politics website. To learn more, please visit: MAPLight.org.

Media Contact:
Pamela Heisey
pamela@maplight.org
415.299.0898

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