Did you know there is quite a lot to be found at votesmart.org on the state legislative and gubernatorial candidates running in your state? To be specific, we cover approximately 14,000 candidates seeking state office this election season alone.
We begin our state-level candidate coverage by attempting to find their issue positions through the State-Specific Political Courage Test. Every candidate that qualifies for the General Election is contacted, which in some cases proves to be a challenging process as states have widely varying legislative bodies. Example being, the 49 seat unicameral Nebraska Legislature, to the larger 424 member New Hampshire General Court (which is almost as large as the U.S. Congress). Each candidate is mailed the Test multiple times, and as you can imagine, staff, interns, and volunteers spend quite a bit of time ensuring that these candidates are given a fair chance to respond.
Project Vote Smart's state coverage isn't limited to just issue position content. We make every effort each election year to research and compile candidate biographical information, contact information, social media sites, special interest group ratings and endorsements, photos, and position papers. While we ask candidates to submit this information to us along with their Political Courage Test, we spend the majority of our time searching for this information on our own. It's an enormous undertaking that would truly be impossible without the help of our dedicated staff, interns, and member volunteers.
Project Vote Smart is the only organization of its kind to cover state candidates from all states in such a manner. We encourage users to take an interest in state candidates by accessing them here and finding their state at the top of the page.