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3. Research starting points
Here are some ways we've found to find reliable content in the shortest amount of time. Please post others here or comment in Discussion.
- If the individual has a Wikipedia page, start there. Look for any material on climate change already - usually under environment or energy. Generally only big name candidates with a history of being outspoken on climate have material already posted.
- Check an incumbent's official legislative page and look for "climate" on any pages relating to issues, environment, or energy. Some even have a search box that makes it easy.
- Do the same at an individual's campaign page. Sometimes campaign pages don't show up unless you search with "Candidate Name for Office" or "Candidate Name for State."
- Use Google Advanced Search to quickly find keywords within a website. This often works better than the built-in search engine on campaign or official websites. If there's a lot of information, you can narrow results down for the last year or two.
- Try searching for relevant news articles at Google with the candidate's name plus "climate change." This will usually bring up results on some of the position aggregator sites like OnTheIssues.org so you don't have to visit each one.
- Do the same for "global warming," especially useful for longtime elected officials.
- Searching in the same way at Google News can turn up items hidden in general search.
- For candidates who served in Congress since 2009, use our Key Senate & House Votes help page to look up their climate change voting record. There you'll also find suggested language to describe those votes.
- For candidates who have served in the California legislature since 2014, use our Key California State Assembly & Senate Votes help page to look up their climate change voting record. There you'll also find suggested language to describe those votes.
- Some candidates in smaller/less visible races may have little on their campaign site. Some even use Facebook as their main campaign site. Cite these when all else fails, since Wikipedia sees third-party news reports as better sources than candidates' campaign pages and Facebook posts, etc. These are great for Questions 1-3 but try to limit their use in Draft summaries.
- Any time you find a quote, look for the most reputable or original source.
- If you're still coming up short, try YouTube or TV News Archive for the candidate's name plus "climate change" -- Youtube sometimes shows transcripts. Write down anything relevant and note the source including "minute xx:xx to xx:xx of xx." Of course, don’t spend too long listening to long videos in search of something on climate change.