Thursday, September 21, 2023

Political contributions, enhanced

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Political contributions, enhanced

Jeremy Singer-Vine, Data is Plural: “Political scientist Adam Bonica’s Database on Ideology, Money in Politics, and Elections(DIME) gathers “500 million itemized political contributions made by individuals and organizations to local, state, and federal elections covering from 1979 to 2020.” The project, which received a major update last month, “is intended to make data on campaign finance and elections (1) more centralized and accessible, (2) easier to work with, and (3) more versatile […].” 

It assigns each contributor a unique identifier, geocodes their stated addresses, quantifies their ideological orientation, and more. The raw data come from several sources, including the Federal Election Commissionand, a collaborative projectthat aims to be “America’s most comprehensive dictionary of campaign finance jargon.”

Historical newspaper articles

Jeremy Singer-Vine, Data is PluralMelissa Dell et al.’s American Stories datasetcontains the text of ~400 million newspaper articles, extracted from ~20 million public-domain scans in the Library of Congress’s Chronicling America project (DIP 2017.08.16). To construct the dataset, the authors built “a novel deep learning pipeline that incorporates layout detection, legibility classification, custom OCR, and the association of article texts spanning multiple bounding boxes.” 

For each article, the dataset provides the newspaper name, edition number, date of publication (largely in the 1800s–1920s), page number, headline, byline, and article text. Previously: The LOC’s Newspaper Navigator dataset (DIP 2020.10.07), which extracts visual content from the Chronicling America scans. [h/t Derek M. Jones]”

NEWT GINGRICH:  American Despotism: We are faced with a totalitarian cancer that will have to be confronted and defeated at every level. “America is now in the deepest, most dangerous constitutional crisis since the hostility in the 1850s that led to secession and civil war.”