May 24, 2022

What are They Saying in Congress? "Announcing the Return of 'Capitol Words'" (Data Analysis Tool)

From the Sunlight Foundation:

More than three years ago, we launched a website called Capitol Words that gave an at-a-glance view of what word was most popular in Congress. Today, the Sunlight Foundation is unveiling the completely revamped and rewritten Capitol Words.

To folks who never had a chance to play with our previous version, Capitol Words scrapes the bulk data of the Congressional Record from the Government Printing Office, does some computer magic to clean-up and organize the data, then presents an easy-to-use front-end website where you can quickly search the favorite keywords of legislators, states or dates.

The new version now allows users to search, index and graph up to five-word phrases that give greater context and meaning to the turns-of-phrase zinging across the aisle. Where we once could only track individual terms like ‘health‘ or ‘energy,’ now we can break down the issue further into ‘health care reform,’ ‘renewable energy,’ ‘high energy prices‘ or however you wish.

Read the Complete Blog Post and Learn About Visualization Tools

Two Related Items

1. From Sunlight Labs: Influence Explorer Redesigned

The Data Commons team has launched a redesign of Influence Explorer that greatly improves navigation on long, complex profile pages. As you scroll, the navigation bars stay with you so that you know which data set you are currently viewing and can jump between them quickly. The year selector also follows you so that you can easily switch to different year views. (via Sunlight Labs Blog)

2. From Yahoo Labs: Political Insights (First Posted November 30, 2011)

We look into all the queries landing on 155 top U.S. political blogs annotated with a political leaning.* Subsequently we assign a leaning to each query, proportional to the number of times it lands on a blog with a particular leaning. The resulting data set consists of classified queries, made by hundreds of thousands of users.


About Gary Price

Gary Price ( is a librarian, writer, consultant, and frequent conference speaker based in the Washington D.C. metro area. Before launching INFOdocket, Price and Shirl Kennedy were the founders and senior editors at ResourceShelf and DocuTicker for 10 years. From 2006-2009 he was Director of Online Information Services at, and is currently a contributing editor at Search Engine Land.