While playing with OpenSecrets web service, I’ve run into some puzzling discrepancies between the data it returns and the data listed on the website. I’m interested in the PAC contributions from a given sector to a given candidate during a given cycle.
When I access Senator Clintons 2006 PAC contributions, I see $282,600 in Finance, Insurance & Real Estate PAC contributions. When I access this data through the candSector method of their API I get a response that lists $363,464 in Finance, Insurance & Real Estate PAC contributions.
I tried using the CandIndByInd method to gather data on the specific industries that make up the Finance, Insurance & Real Estate sector. These numbers match when I receive them, but I sometimes get a “Resource not Found” error. For example Senator Shelby’s 2006 Finance, Insurance & Real Estate PAC contributions shows $4,500 in misc finance contributions, but the API request just returns the error.