Search Strategies

Book & Manuscript Tips
  • Search these Library of Congress subject headings in WestCat , the library's online catalog:
      • Tips: Use the Quick Search option and enter the terms below in the search box and select Subject as the search.
  • elections
  • dark money
  • political action committees
  • right to vote
  • voting/voters
  • foreign interference
  • suffrage
  • disenfranchisement
  • democracy
  • electoral college
  • popular vote
  • campaign finance
  • political parties
  • federal election commission
  • voter fraud
  • voter registration
  • voter turnout
  • political campaigns
  • politicians
  • primary elections
  • political participation
  • Citizens United
  • contested elections
  • campaign fraud
  • Use the Quick Search option and enter aging, ageing or elder? in the search box and select Any Word Anywhere as the search.
  • Use the Advance Search option and search "voter fraud" or "political corruption" as phrases.
  • If you are having trouble finding material on your topic, try searching I-Share (through WestCat ), a database of the catalogs of over 70 Illinois libraries or WorldCat , a database of library catalogs from all over the world.
  • Any book you find which we don't have may be requested through Interlibrary Loan. Allow a week to 10 days.
  • Try searching CRS Reports to find Congressional Research Reports on your topic.
Related Topics:
  • political corruption
  • gerrymandering

An important source for many research topics is Congress. Congressional committees and subcommittees hold hearings on a wide variety of controversial and timely subjects. Simply add the word "hearing?" to a search string in WestCat .

Search Engines

Google and StartPage
Use these search engines to search for government information by typing "site:gov" in the search box preceding your search terms:

  • site:gov "election fraud"
  • site:mil election interference
Article Tips

Illinois Voter Information

Registering to Vote in Illinois
A link to a pdf document on registering to vote in Illinois from the the Illinois State Board of Elections' website.
Illinois Voter Registration Lookup
This site can be used to look up whether you are registered to vote in Illinois. It also gives a voter's polling place.
Early Voting in Illinois
A link to a pdf document on early voting in Illinois from the Illinois State Board of Elections' website.
Voting by Mail in Illinois
A link to a pdf document on voting by mail (absentee ballot) in Illinois from the Illinois State Board of Elections' website.

McDonough County, Illinois Voter Information

McDonough County, Illinois Polling Locations
A link to an Interactive Map showing the location of polling places in McDonough County, Illinois. Users can click on a polling location to see the address.
Early Voting in McDonough County, Illinois
A link to a Word document giving the early voting schedule in McDonough County, Illinois, from the McDonough County, Illinois Elections and Voter Registration website.
Sample Ballot for McDonough County, Illinois
A link to the Sample Ballot for McDonough County, Illinois from the McDonough County, Illinois Elections and Voter Registration website.


Federal Election Commission
This agency's website contains links to laws and regs, campaign finance data, and forms needed to start your own PAC.
Illinois Board of Elections
All about voting, candidates and more.
Vote Missouri
Information on voting in Missouri, including information on voter ID requirements and absentee voting.
Voting in Iowa
Information on voting in Iowa, including information on registering to vote and absentee voting.


Voting and Registration (Census)
This webpage from the Current Population Survey has biennial data going back to 1996 and historical time series data going back to 1964.

Selected Political Parties


US Presidential Election Maps, 1789-2012
This site contains printable maps from the 1997-2014 edition of the National Atlas of the United States showing electoral votes won, by political party, for the Presidential elections from 1789 to 2012.
Voting America
This website from the University of Richmond has cinematic maps, interactive maps and commentary concerning Presidential elections from 1984 onward.
Atlas of U.S. Presidential Elections
This site from David Leip has national statistics from 1789 to present as well as maps.

General Information Sites

Project Vote Smart
Issue positions, campaign finance, and voting records are some of the things you'll find at this premiere political website.
This website sponsored by the League of Women Voters Education fund has everything you need to know about voting in your state.
Map the Candidates (Slate)
The site allows you to access videos and other information by looking at a map where you can set the timeline, pick the date to see who was where, and what they were doing on the campaign trail.
American National Election Studies (ANES)
This site is a collaboration between Stanford University and the University of Michigan has data concerning the "causes and consequences of voting behavior and electoral outcomes." Data back to 1948.
Pew Research Center
Find political polling results and analysis, commentary, datasets and more.
Pollster (from Huffington Post)
Analysis of polling data from various sources.
The most up-to-date polling and analysis from statistical wunderkind Nate Silver.

Political News

Political news and commentary.
Roll Call Politics (Congressional Quarterly)
Political news concerning campaigns for president, house and senate seats and governorships.
ABC News Politics
Political News and analysis from ABC News.
Political news and analysis from CNN.
CBS News Politics
Presidential campaign coverage from CBS.
NBC News Politics
Campaign news and analysis from NBC.
Politics (NYT)
Political coverage from the New York Times.

True or False?

Money in Politics