Interest Group Alignment
First, let me say welcome aboard to our newest team member, programmer A.S.L. Devi. Devi's already proved herself invaluable by building our latest feature: politician—interest group alignment. It's a terrible name (my fault; let me know if you have a better one) but the idea is simple: go to a page like Mark Kirk's and scroll to the bottom. There you'll see that Kirk is a big fan of people like the National Association of Home Builders and the National Association of Realtors, but not the American Civil Liberties Union. And for each group you can click and see the votes where they agree and disagree.
Furthermore, if you click on a bill and scroll to the bottom, you can see all the groups that supported or opposed the bill.
It's pretty fun stuff and, in my opinion, awfully exciting. It's all made possible thanks to our partners: GovTrack.us, a fantastic site which provides data on bills, and MAPLight.org, a Berkeley non-profit which each summer (including right now) brings interns out to search the news to see who is supporting and opposing the bills currently before Congress.
Thanks to everyone who made this happen. I hope you enjoy it!
posted by Aaron Swartz on 2008-06-16T00:00:00Z