Researching Money in California Politics

Workshop Description:

Elections across the country are getting more expensive every year, and understanding how to track the money in elections and its potential impacts on public policymaking has never been more important. In this session, Pete Quist of OpenSecrets will demonstrate tools available on its website. Focusing on dynamics affecting labor issues, the skills taught in this workshop will empower you to analyze contributions to California state candidates, elected officials, parties, and ballot measure committees. In addition, you will also learn how campaign finance data can assist with power mapping efforts, explore who’s who among lobbying groups in Sacramento, and better understand dark money and its role in political campaigns.

Workshop Leader:

Pete Quist joined OpenSecrets in the 2021 merger between The Center for Responsive Politics and the National Institute on Money in State Politics Pete had been the research director at NIMP since 2013, after serving five years as a researcher. At NIMP, he focused on best practices for disclosure of money in state politics. Before joining the Institute in 2008, Pete spent two years at Project Vote Smart, where he tracked the progress of congressional and state legislation, summarized key bills in plain language, and compiled voting records. Pete earned a bachelor of political science from South Dakota State University.