On Capitol Hill, the currency is not looks, and it’s not money; it’s contacts. You’re only as good as your network and how fast you can access accurate information. Some links to sites with value.

Cloture Club – staff go-to site to find events offering free drinks and food.

Congressional Research Service (CRS) – provides research for staff when they have questions on policy or law. CRS responses are confidential, although staff may make them public. Since 2004, The Federation of American Scientists (FAS) has collected hundreds of CRS reports and made them available on their website.

dcist – devoted to local D.C. news.

Government Accountability Office (GAO) – the investigative arm of Congress, GAO issues reports to respond to formal questions from Members of Congress. From the time of a request, a GAO report normally takes about 18 months.

Heard on the Hill – the gossip blog for Roll Call.

The Hill – a D.C. newspaper which covers Congress.

House Employment Information – site run by the House that list jobs and resumes.

Hot Bills – site run by the Senate Library that lists the hottest bills of each Congress. Also allows subscription to weekly email if you don’t want to check regularly.

Legistorm – best site to learn about staff and Members, to include staff names, contacts, and salaries. Unfortunately, much of the information is now behind a firewall.

Open Congress – a wiki linking to a plethora of sites and documents about the Congress and how it works. This project is run by staff with the Sunlight Foundation and the Participatory Politics Foundation.

Politico – considered to be the Hill rag most interested political bickering and covering the horse race of politics.

Politico Influence – Politico’s blog on lobbyists, fundraisers, and job hopping by staff and Members.

Politico Playbook – a morning email roundup of political news by Mike Allen.

Prince of Petworth – popular blog with D.C. locals for D.C. news, real estate, and trivia.

Roll Call – newspaper that covers the Hill.

Scout – this Sunlight Foundation product lets you search by keyword or phrase through federal and state legislation, congressional speeches, and federal regulations. You can even set this service to receive email alerts.

Senate Employment Bulletin – the Senate’s jobs listing site.

Senate Historical Office – collects information on the Senate’s history including speeches, news and oral histories.

Thomas – site maintained by the Library of Congress that allows search of legislative information such as bills, reports, and votes.

U.S. House of Representatives History, Art, & Archives site – online site that collects the institutional memory of the House. Documents the history of the House, including the oral histories of former staff and Members.

Washington Post (federal page) – the Post’s webpage that collates information on the federal government.

Wonkette – a vapid yet fun look at politics and D.C. culture.