Building Trust & Effectiveness in Congress
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History of the Gold Mouse Awards

Ten years ago, the Congressional Management Foundation (CMF) created the Gold Mouse Awards to recognize the best websites on Capitol Hill. Learn how and why this competition was started, and hear from Rep. Mike Honda, the only six-time award winner in Congress.

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Op-Ed: Lawmakers may fail when it comes to ethics, but they try

I winced upon reading the results of The Hill's poll that found "(m)ore than two-thirds of voters think the ethical standards of politicians have declined over the past generation" and that a majority think they are "unethical" ("HILL POLL: Politicians, Congress unethical — and getting worse," June 13).

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Op-Ed: Congress’s tragedy of the commons

"As I step down from the chairmanship of the nonpartisan Congressional Management Foundation, I'd like to make a plea to the members of Congress whom the foundation exists to serve: that they recapture the trust of the American people."

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Inside the Hill: Who Handles Online Communications

In the seventh installment of 'Inside the Hill', congressional staff and Congressman Honda discuss how they use and manage online communications.

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How to Win a Congressional Website Award: Solid Issue Information

The Congressional Management Foundation will commence our seventh round of analyzing and grading more than 600 congressional personal, committee, and leadership office websites on June 1. The results will be released in October, with the Gold Mouse Awards Ceremony in November. We recognize that Members of Congress, by their nature, are competitive, which is why we established the Gold Mouse Awards system in 2001. One of the most common questions CMF gets is: 'What is the most important factor for winning a Gold Mouse Award?'

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Inside the Hill: Congressional Staff Read Everything

In the sixth installment of 'Inside the Hill', congressional staff discuss how the Internet has affected the ways congressional offices get their news.

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Constituents Tell Rep. Forbes What They Think Through His “instaPoll”

Members have long included short polling questions in their regular newsletters or on their websites, and some even pose questions on Facebook or Twitter. Rep. Randy Forbes (R-VA), however, is taking a slightly different approach. Rather than tacking on a polling question to a much larger email newsletter—almost as an afterthought—he created a cleverly branded regular poll of his constituents called the “instaPoll.”

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Contrary to Popular Belief, Constituents Trump Lobbyists

Today, CMF and the Partnership released a new survey of congressional staff which reveals that they believe constituents have far more influence on undecided lawmakers than lobbyists. If you listen to the media, the pundits, or the general public, however, you might think lobbyists are at the top of the heap. But our research shows this is not the case.

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New House Calendar Benefits Grassroots Advocates

The newly released House calendar for the 112th Congress presents a fascinating opportunity for grassroots advocates seeking to build relationships and influence legislators. The calendar makes good on part of a promise the House Republicans made that they would operate differently than Democrats, and even previous Republican leaders.

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