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California Government Information: California Legislators

Researching Legislators and their Legislation

Here are some tips and tricks to find information about legislation sponsors.

1. Start with the Senate web pages. Each Senator has a webpage that usually has info about the district, a newsletter, press releases, a list of sponsored legislation, biographical info, committee service info, etc. All of this should give you an idea about what the Senator considers important.

2. Search for your candidate on Project VoteSmart for information about interest group ratings, issue positions, and voting record.

3. Check the Secretary of State's Statewide Election Results. You can look back at a few years to see whether the district tends to regularly elect one party or another and whether the margin is large or small.

4. The Legislature's Bill Information site will give you more detailed info about the bill you have to examine. It'll give you bill history, vote info for committees its gone through, the other house if it started there, and some analysis.

5. For more information, search news (via a database like Access World News) to find stories about the Senator or the bill. You may find similar legislation or causes the Senator has supported. Researching the bill may lead to articles about other groups or politicians that support or oppose the legislation and why.