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How did Tuesday’s election influence the S.W.A.M.P. index?

Posted on by Shruti Shah

While much of the focus on the mid-term elections was on who got elected, there were significant results regarding how candidates get elected and the ethics rules to which they are subject once in office. Read more

Virginia Does Not Fare Well in SWAMP Index (WVTF)

Posted on by Michael Pope


It all started with corruption trial of former governor Bob McDonnell. Shruti Shah at the Coalition for Integrity was blogging about the trial, and she realized that state laws governing what kinds of gifts elected officials can receive were pretty thin. That gave her an idea. “I should come up with a comparative scorecard on certain ethics and transparency related legislation in the 50 states and DC,” Shah remembered. “So that really was the inspiration for what is now the SWAMP Index.” The SWAMP index gives Virginia a score of 35, which Shah points out is a failing grade.   SWAMP is an acronym for States With Anti-corruption Measures for Public officials. Read More


Does Idaho need to drain the swamp? State lags in national anti-corruption ranking (McClatchy News)

Posted on by Kellen Browning


Far from the reaches of Washington, D.C., there may be another swamp in need of draining: Boise. Idaho’s anti-corruption rules are the third-worst in the country, according to a new national ranking called the S.W.A.M.P. Index, giving elected officials less incentive to avoid ethical violations.

The Index is a project produced by the Coalition for Integrity, a nonpartisan advocacy group that analyzes state laws governing ethics agencies, gift giving and campaign contribution reporting. Idaho scored 16 points out of 100 in the ranking of various anti-corruption laws, placing it ahead of only Wyoming (12 points) and North Dakota (0 points). Read More

What is the S.W.A.M.P. Index telling us about state ethics agencies? (FCPA Blog)

Posted on by Shruti Shah


Two weeks ago the Coalition for Integrity released the S.W.A.M.P. Index, which ranks and scores all 50 U.S. states and the District of Columbia based on the laws governing ethics and transparency in the executive and legislative branches. I am very encouraged by the response to the index and the questions we have already received. Our hope is that voters demand commitments to address the shortcomings in their state’s legal framework as identified in our report. The results are not only essential to a voter’s understanding of their state’s ethics agencies, but also to current and future elected-officials so they understand how their state’s legal framework compares to those in other states and can work towards plugging loopholes. Read More

Which US state is most corruption-prone? Look away, North Dakota (Quartz)

Posted on by Max de Haldevang


The US public has spent the past two years riveted by high-level corruption scandals and allegations in Washington, DC. They should also be looking closer to home, according to a new report by anti-corruption NGO Coalition for Integrity. The NGO graded all 50 states plus Washington, DC, on the strength of their anti-corruption laws and regulations, and found that only sixteen got a passing grade of 60% or more. North Dakota came in last with 0% and Wyoming behind it at 12%. Read More


Washington state tops list of states with tough corruption laws (Washington Post)

Posted on by Washington Post


Washington state may share a name with the nation’s capital, but there’s no big swamp that needs to be drained in the Pacific Northwest, according to a new independent ranking of anti-corruption laws. The state topped the inaugural S.W.A.M.P. Index’s list of states with tough corruption laws, impressing the Coalition for Integrity with the strength of its ethics agency and measures to prevent lobbyists from plying elected officials with gifts. Read More

Are political swamps in California and Washington mostly drained? This study says they are. (Sacramento Bee)

Posted on by Andrew Sheeler


California ranks second in the nation for anti-corruption laws, according to a new report from nonpartisan corruption watchdog Coalition for Integrity. California shares that second-place designation with Rhode Island; both states fell behind Washington state, which claimed the best score in the 2018 States With Anti-Corruption Measures for Public Officials (S.W.A.M.P.) Index. Read More


Ethics Watchdog gives New Mexico low marks (AP)

Posted on by Associated Press


A watchdog group on ethics in government is giving the state of New Mexico low marks for safeguards designed to discourage corruption. The Washington, D.C.-based Coalition for Integrity on Thursday ranked New Mexico among the 10 worst states when it comes to ethics oversight, restrictions on gifts to public officials and disclosure of political spending by independent groups. Read More

Introducing the Coalition for Integrity’s S.W.A.M.P. Index (FCPA Blog)

Posted on by Shruti Shah


After a summer of hard work, I am pleased to present Coalition for Integrity’s Index of States With Anti-Corruption Measures for Public officials (S.W.A.M.P.).  As the 2018 elections approach, we want voters to understand the “state of ethics” in their state so that they can better evaluate candidate platforms, demand improvements in their state’s legal framework and judge proposed reforms.  State officials can see how their state’s ethics framework compares to those in other states and these officials also have access to a description of best practices to draw from. Read More

New ‘SWAMP’ Index Ranks States on Public Corruption Laws (Wall Street Journal)

Posted on by Samuel Rubenfeld


A new index from the group formerly known as the U.S. chapter of Transparency International ranks the “state of ethics” in each U.S. state. The organization, now known as the Coalition for Integrity, analyzed the laws of the 50 states and the District of Columbia related to the scope, independence and power of ethics agencies, as well as the acceptance and disclosures of gifts by public officials, transparency of funding expenditure and client disclosures for legislators. Read more