earmarkwatch was a free service created by the Sunlight Foundation. It has now been retired to a gentle pasture in a rural computing cloud.
Enjoy this archived content, but remember to check out our other transparency projects to find more tools and information about your government.
Here's your chance to investigate earmarks–those spending measures inserted by members of Congress into bills that direct
taxpayer dollars to their pet projects. Are members using earmarks to meet pressing needs? Reward political supporters?
Are they good public policy, or vehicles for pure pork? Every earmark is different, and we currently have over 3,000 of them
online, ready and waiting for you to dig into.
The research framework we're providing asks you specific questions about the recipient of the earmark and the member who sponsored it, and provides links to the sources of information you can search for answers.
You will also have an opportunity to provide additional information from your own research. We offer some suggestions and ideas for additional information you can find, but feel free to follow your own instincts.
* "The Brains," Harper's Weekly p.992 October 12, 1871.