The Center for Responsive Politics (CRP) is a self-claimed nonpartisan, 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization founded with the intention of tracking money in politics.  The CRP was founded in 1983 by former U.S. Senators Frank Church (D-Idaho) and Hugh Scott of Pennsylvania, a centrist Rockefeller Republican. 
The Center for Responsive Politics is perhaps best known for its website, OpenSecrets, in which it compiles political financial data to include campaign contribution profiles of members of Congress, a lobbying database, and financial information related to Congressional committees.
The CRP has been critical of expanded political advocacy rights since the Citizens United ruling and has been criticized for contributing to “stifling the free speech of those who want to give to political causes.” 
At its start, CRP tracked money in politics by analyzing contributions from political action committees (PACs) to congressional candidates and by compiling data and publishing large reports.  In 1990, the CRP published the first OpenSecrets book that documented and analyzed congressional political contributions in the 1988 elections.  In addition to analyzing political contributions from PACs, the book also reported on the spending patterns of interest groups and companies within major industries. 
OpenSecrets.org, the Center for Responsive Politics’ flagship website, went online following the 1996 elections.  The website began to evolve by producing online contribution profiles prior to Election Day for federal candidates in the 1998 elections. 
While the CRP labels itself as a “nonpartisan” organization, it publishes left-wing campaign finance advocacy on its website and criticizes what it considers to be “dark money” and campaign finance laws under the Citizens United ruling. 
Some conservative and free-market groups worry that CRP’s negative portrayal of political contributions can “stifle the free speech of those who want to give to political causes, but fear personal and professional attacks if their preferences become public.” 
Today, OpenSecrets includes not only contribution profiles for members of Congress, but also information on their personal finances, money spent on their campaigns by joint fundraising committees, and a lobbying database, to name a few features. OpenSecrets concentrates most of its data within two categories: Politicians and Elections, and Influence and Lobbying.
Politicians & Elections
OpenSecrets aggregates political contributions from campaign committees, outside groups, lobbyists, and Super PACs to candidates in Presidential and Congressional races. In addition, OpenSecrets amasses the financial information and disclosures for the Trump administration.  Financial summaries for political parties and party committees are also included on the site and display the contributions made to the party, the recipients of the party’s expenditures, and a geographic analysis of expenditures.  OpenSecrets also publishes an election overview online that includes general trends from elections, the most expensive races, and top donors. Election overviews are available online for all federal elections dating back to 1990. 
Influence & Lobbying
OpenSecrets also provides data on spending by numerous interest groups. The site provides data by sector and issue type for all elections since 1990.  In addition, OpenSecrets includes an all-encompassing lobbying database that aggregates data on top lobbyists and top lobbying firms, as well as data on specific bills that lobbyists reported lobbying on. 
In addition to political finance data collections, OpenSecrets also maintains an independent news platform called OpenSecrets News and also publishes independent reports.  Additionally, the CRP’s OpenData initiative allows for the non-commercial use of CRP’s archive of money-in-politics data. 
The CRP was founded in 1983 by then-Senators Frank Church and Hugh Scott. Senator Church was a Democratic Senator from Idaho who served in the U.S. Senate for 24 years.  Senator Scott was a moderate Republican politician from Pennsylvania who served in both the U.S House and U.S. Senate. 
Sheila Krumholz has been the Executive Director of the CRP since 2006. Before becoming the Executive Director, she served as the CRP’s research director and as an assistant editor. 
CRP’s Development Director, Jennifer Barrett, joined CRP in 2017. Her previous experience includes working on Rep. Millicent Fenwick’s (R-N.J.) staff and also working as a fundraiser for the Smithsonian Institution’s Hirshhorn Museum. She also worked for the liberal magazines The New Republic and The Washington Monthly and a Russian newspaper, Nezavisimaya Gazeta 
John Coyle became the Chair of CRP’s Board of Directors in Fall 2018 after serving as the board’s Vice Chair.  Coyle is the Managing Director of Navellier & Associates, an investment management company.  Coyle’s previously worked at Congressional Quarterly, a publishing company that primarily produces publications relating to the United States Congress. 
Nick Penniman, a member of CRP’s Board of Directors, is the founder and CEO of Issue One, a left-of-center organization that that seeks to restrict lobbying and election-related speech activity. Prior, Penniman was the founder and executive director of the left-leaning Huffington Post Investigative Fund and an associate editor of American Prospect, a left-of-center magazine. 
According to recent Form 990 filings, the CRP claimed more than $2.8 million in total revenue and more than $2.1 million in total expenses in 2016. 
Since January 2017, the CRP has received funding of more than $100,000 from numerous left-of-center organizations including Democracy Fund, the Ford Foundation, the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, George Soros’ Open Society Foundations, and the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation.