Copy, Paste, Legislate beta

Do you know if a bill introduced in your statehouse — it might govern who can fix your shattered iPhone screen or whether you can still sue a pedophile priest years later — was actually written by your elected lawmakers? Use this new tool to find out.

Spoiler alert The answer may well be no.

Thousands of pieces of “model legislation” are drafted each year by business organizations and special interest groups and distributed to state lawmakers for introduction. These copycat bills influence policymaking across the nation, state by state, often with little scrutiny. This news application was developed by the Center for Public Integrity, part of a year-long collaboration with USA TODAY and the Arizona Republic to bring the practice into the light.

If you find this tool helpful, please consider supporting our work by making a tax-deductible contribution to The Center for Public Integrity. Your contribution will help us keep this tracker updated with new legislation and shine a light on influence in state legislatures.

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Read our investigations into model legislation

How to use this tool


This tool tries to identify shared language between two or more bills. There may be cases where two bills contain identical language but are not model legislation. We recommend visually inspecting the matching bills to confirm that the shared language is substantive and is related to your topic.

If you are facing any issues using this tool or have suggestions for how we can improve, please contact: