There are few things more contentious in the world today than Politics. In fact, I would suggest the only thing more so is war. In many people's
opinions, the two are intertwined to a level that defies separation at this point.
Where does all that money come from though? Who does it go to? Where can anyone find these numbers and have any sense that what is seen can be relied
upon at all? Well, it takes a bit of work to find, I won't say that isn't true. However, the truth is out there, to paraphrase Fox Mulder's
favorite motto in a popular TV show.
Opensecrets.org is the source of what I bring for consideration today and they're gracious enough to allow free use of their data with proper credit
given. I find their data and material cited by both Fox and CNN with financial donors ranging from the Tides Foundation to the Rockefellers. A more
balanced source for data is hard to come by these days, so I hope these charts and displays will be as enlightening to others as they were for me.
Now, on to the good stuff....and every chart is cited and properly sourced at Opensecrets, for those looking to backcheck any or all of the relevant
Religion In Politics
(Organizations listed represent the totals of those members who contributed, not the organization itself contributing
And if all this Religion in political outcomes seems a little recent and new to some of us older folk, you're not going crazy. It is relatively new
in American Politics, as the next data shows.
I was as surprised to see the actual figures as anyone. In some ways I thought it would be different to one direction or the other. Either way, it
would seem to represent an introduction of Organized Religion into the political arena that isn't new to this cycle, but relatively new to this
Nation and personally, unwelcome. Politics is a dirty, dirty business and it pains me to see the Faiths lower themselves into the swamp, quite
frankly. The numbers are what they are though, and it's important for context to be aware of them, IMO.
Lobbyists In Politics
Now this category was more shocking than the last in terms of what I may have expected to see compared to what I actually found. First, lets look at
the recent history of Lobbying in Washington by the numbers.
Next is where it got a bit interesting, I've gathered the chart of the top 10 for both Republican and Democrat recipients of Lobbying dollars by
Industry and recipient. Lets see how your own guesses may match to the actual figures... To break things up a bit, I'll show the Republicans here
Now, the Democrats:
(The two charts above may be a bit confusing at first. Total Dollar amounts per party represent the aggregate totals from
those industries across candidates of each party. The name on the right represents the single individual who most benefited, regardless of party)
How is that for breaking it down to the basics? I'll leave commentary out of the OP here because that simply isn't the intent of the presentation on
my part. I'll let everyone draw their own conclusions by the data.
Next I took a look at the top recipients of Lobbyist Dollars in outright totals for the 2012 cycle at the time the data was assembled.
Tsk Tsk to these top 10 and I sure wouldn't feel the last bit good about making that list. Finally and for general interest as much as anything
else, I ran the totals for individual Lobbyist contributors for this same 2012 cycle.
Credit for Data:
Open Secrets - Lobbying Category
Open Secrets - Religious Contributions
Credibility Material for Source:
Open Secrets - Funding and Supporters to Site itself
Open Secrets - Awards and Acknowledgements to Site Itself