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Elections and Campaigns 2004

Do you need to know...

Check out the following online information sources to help you cut through, and monitor, the money and media circus that arguably drives election results. For more information about the role of money in electoral politics, check out our Money and Politics resources section.

DataCenter will continue to update this list over the election cycle. Please let us know if you have any suggestions for resources we should include!

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Annenberg Political Fact Check (http://www.factcheck.org/)
This site describes itself as "a nonpartisan, nonprofit, 'consumer advocate' for voters that aims to reduce the level of deception and confusion in U.S. politics." The site provides original articles, with summaries and sources, analyzing factual accuracy in "TV ads, debates, speeches, interviews, and news releases." Searchable archives going back to December 2003. From the Annenberg Public Policy Center of the University of Pennsylvania.

Candidate Calendars & Schedules
Below are links to each of the candidates' official calendars. Bush and Kerry show events for the upcoming week, Kucinich posts events 24 hours ahead, and Nader posts events taking place that day.

Clerk of the House Vote Counts (http://clerk.house.gov/members/electionInfo/index.html)
Since 1920, the Clerk of the House has collected and published the official vote counts for federal elections from the official sources among the various states and territories. These documents, out of print for many years, have been collected and scanned in a format to make them once again available to researchers and students.

Demos Democracy Program
(http://www.demos-usa.org/page13.cfm)
The Democracy Program "works to promote democracy reform and eliminate institutional barriers that keep Americans locked out of our political system". The site includes extensive resources to understand reform efforts (Help America Vote Act) and disenfranchised communities, particularly ex-felons who are currently barred from voting.

Factiva Media Visibility Index (http://www.factiva.com/index.asp)
Tracks the number of times particular "hot button" issues are mentioned by candidates in the news on a weekly basis. Click on Media Visibility Index to see the latest results. Does not provide archives or search feature.

Federal Election Commission, PACRONYMS (http://www.fec.gov/pages/pacronym.htm)
Provides an alphabetical list of acronyms, abbreviations, initials, and common names of federal political action committees (PACs) to help researchers readily identify committees when their full names are not disclosed on campaign finance reports. The list includes the PACRONYM, full committee name, city and state of its address, FEC I.D. number, and the name of its sponsoring, connected, or affiliated organization (if not readily identifiable from the full committee name). Unless noted otherwise in the full committee name, the acronym "PAC" refers to "Political Action Committee." There is an appendix included which lists other standard abbreviations commonly used in committee names.

Fundrace (http://www.fundrace.org/)
Tracks the fundraising race among the presidential candidates. Ranks candidates fundraising by several factors, such as average income of donors, number of donors, etc. Also provides maps showing which counties, states and 3-digit zip codes are providing the most financial support to each candidate. Eyebeam engages cultural dialogue at the intersection of the arts and sciences.

Independent Progressive Politics Network, Democracy 2004 (http://www.democracy2004.org/mobilization.html)
This site aims to pull together a comprehensive map of the major issues, initiatives, strategies, resources and tools that are being utilized by various progressive communities and movements in a variety of areas. Provides a useful list of links to issue and democracy reform campaigns for the '04 elections, particularly groups that are working to get out the vote.

Lexis-Nexis Campaign News Monitoring (http://www.lexisnexis.com/campaign2004/)
Provides free access to U.S. 2004 election news monitoring from Lexis-Nexis (a fee-based database). The service was launched January 26, 2004. The free section does not include a search function, but is divided into useful categories - In the Headlines, General Campaign News, and Platforms and Issues. Paid subscribers have access to a search function on their log-in page.

Political Money Line Guide to the 2004 Presidential Race
(http://www.fecinfo.com/cgi-win/pml1_sql_PRESIDENTIAL.exe?DoFn=2004)
Shows summary campaign fundraising by the major Democratic and Republican presidential candidates. Includes disbursements, debt, and the major categories of funding sources (PACs, individuals, party committees). Collected by FECInfo.com, a site that provides access to raw data from the Federal Election Commission.

Project Vote Smart (http://www.vote-smart.org/)
Covers candidates and elected officials in five basic categories: biographical information, issue positions, voting records, campaign finances and interest group ratings. Political resources section is particularly thorough.

Racism Watch (http://www.racismwatch.org/index.html)
Network of activists organized to respond to clearly racist statements and actions in the 2004 elections. Monitors statements and actions of candidates at various levels, from local to President. Includes a list of suggested questions for candidates, articles and suggested readings (resources) on racism. You can sign up for their email listserv to join discussions and learn about actions.

Rock the Vote (http://www.rockthevote.com)
Voter registration campaign aimed at youth. Provides information and links for voter registration in every state.

Roper Project Polling Data (http://www.ropercenter.uconn.edu/)
Compiles presidential job approval ratings and issue polling data from 5 polling sources. Gallup polls for previous presidents are also available. You can also find transcripts from candidate debates. From the Roper Center for Public Opinion Research at the University of Connecticut.

University of Michigan, Elections 2004 Documents Center (http://www.lib.umich.edu/govdocs/elec2004.html)
Links to presidential candidate web sites, complete political biographies, voting records, campaign finances, and polling numbers. You can compare them to yourself on the issues. If you decide you want to run for the presidency, there's advice on how to do it. Check out your competition for statewide offices if you are a little less ambitious.
Want to know more about the issues? There are links to the 9/11 Commission hearings, projected federal budget deficit, No Child Left Behind Act, and Congressional debates prior to the Iraq War. Plus there are the usual academic research tools: National Election Surveys, spreadsheets of previous presidential and congressional elections (campus-licensed), and Boolean protocols for political science journal searches.

Updated Feb 2005. Please send Web site corrections to datacenter@datacenter.org.

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