Whether the Service Employees International Union or the Las Vegas Sands, who contributes to political campaigns matters. The ability to discover that information raises the transparency level of political influence, and California just added a Spanish-language version of its campaign finance website, Power Search.
For campaigns taking place for California state offices, Secretary of State Alex Padilla announced last week that campaign finance information is now available in Spanish online, making that data more widely available to the nearly 15 million Latinos in California. Nearly a half million people have requested Spanish-language versions of election materials mailed to them, his office stated; about one-third of all people in the state speak Spanish.
“As the amount of money in politics continues to grow, a clear picture of the flow of campaign dollars is critical for voters to be informed,” Padilla said. “A transparent campaign finance law only works if voters can easily read the data. English may not be the first language of every voter, but every voter has a right to view campaign finance data.”
Around 43 percent of Californians speak a language other than English, according to U.S. Census information from 2007, and the Los Angeles metropolitan area alone was home to 12.8 percent of the Spanish-speakers in the country. The Power Search portal in Spanish can be found here.