October 31, 2014

After we spoke to Nick Rubin, the 17-year-old creator of an app that tells you where candidates get their funding, we got a little obsessed with the idea of political apps. From fact-checking officials to finding out if your cheese is Republican or Democrat, here’s a list of our five favorite apps to get you through the election season.

1. Settle It!
Tired of slogging your way through political spats with your friends? Find out the facts once and for all with Settle It!, an app by the Pulitzer Prize-winning fact-checking site PolitiFact.
Using the app, you can fact-check political rumors and recent statements from politicians, measure how honest an official is using the Truth-o-Meter, and explore the latest policy flip-flips on the Flip-o-Meter.
The app also has a weekly quiz feature that tests your knowledge of the “truthiness” of some of the week’s most famous - or infamous - political statements.
2. Congress
This app is a useful way to find your representatives’ contact information, bios, and recent actions.
Created by the nonpartisan Sunlight Foundation, it also lets you follow the progress of a bill and see how a lawmaker has been voting.  If you don’t like what you see, you can call your representative directly from the app.
3. Countable
Ever wish you could vote on bills hitting the Congressional floor? Well, now you can… sort of.
Countable offers digestible summaries of recent bills in the House and Senate. Users can vote yea or nay on an issue, and the app will send your opinion right to your representative’s office.  Once a politician has voted, you can see if he or she agreed with you on the issue.
Right now, the app only covers federal legislation, but state and local versions are in the works.
4. BuyPartisan
BuyPartisan describes itself as “a nutritional label for your political values.” The app allows you to scan your potato chips' barcode at the store and immediately see the political contributions of the CEO, Board of Directors, and employees of the company that creates the chips.
Though a little gimmicky, the app - created by a former Hill staffer - can serve as a useful reminder of the reach of campaign funding. These days, everything from loafers to drill bits might have a political preference.
5. The White House
Yes, 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue has an app - and yes, it’s actually useful.
The app offers access to live streams of news conferences, updates from the White House blog, and bulletins from the press briefing room. The easy-to-navigate app is helpful for staying up-to-date on information coming from the top.
What do you think of these apps? Are there any we left off our list? Tell us on Facebook and Twitter.

politics, Culture, elections, apps

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