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2020 Top-Rated Nonprofit

The Project On Government Oversight, Inc.

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Civil Rights, Democracy, Government & Public Administration, Public Finance, Taxation & Monetary Policy

Mission: The Project On Government Oversight (POGO) is a nonpartisan independent watchdog that investigates and exposes waste, corruption, abuse of power, and when the government fails to serve the public or silences those who report wrongdoing. We champion reforms to achieve a more effective, ethical, and accountable federal government that safeguards constitutional principles.

Results: POGO is fighting for a fair and just federal government that works for the public, not just for those who have the money and connections to shape public policy for their own private gain. We have earned a reputation as a nonpartisan, honest broker, which makes us a trusted resource among government insiders and decision-makers on both sides of the aisle, enabling us to work toward solutions that will fix America’s democracy. Our investigations team uncovers systemic issues of wrongdoing in the federal government, and focuses on where the government and powerful private interests intersect, a nexus at which corruption and abuse of power can thrive. Our public policy team explores and pushes for evidence-based policy reforms that address the systemic issues our investigations uncover. Our communications team works with the media and the public to educate them about the issues we’ve investigated and to put pressure on decision-makers to pass the reforms that will improve the government.

Geographic areas served: The United States

Programs: • The Center for Defense Information (CDI) aims to secure a far more effective and ethical military at a significantly lower cost. • The Congressional Oversight Initiative (COI) provides congressional staff with resources and knowledge to perform their oversight responsibilities more effectively, therefore strengthening the legislative branch’s ability to counterbalance executive power. • The Constitution Project (TCP) safeguards constitutional rights that are threatened by abuse of the government’s national security and domestic policing powers.

Community Stories

633 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

9

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

POGO does a lot of good work that the mainstream media misses, has little interest in or distorts.

8

Donor

Rating: 5

POGO uncovers and covers very important issues that the news media overlooks. I really appreciate their efforts.

6 Ruth69

General Member of the Public

Rating: 4

POGO has helped with a lot of different and things and I am happy to be able to voice my opinions on all the different projects they are helping out with. Keep doing what all of you are doing.

8

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

For the past few years, I have been reading the literature published by POGO. It has provided information that is not available through the general media and has helped correct much of the misinformation that is available through main line sources, particularly funding for the military. I appreciate the fact that POGO points out how federal funds can be spent most helpfully and where money has and is being wasted. I have used information from POGO to write to my U.S. senators and representative.

3

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

Fearless! Delves into controversial subjects others won't consider. I'm often searching for details on subjects only POGO provides. Thank you for your consistency.

6

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

I think it is important to know the truth. POGO is an excellent source of information. The people who investigate and write the columns are excellent . Keep up this important work! Everyone should read this web site.

5

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

A force for morality and decency, supporting whistleblowers and exposing the astonishing abuses of a goverment that is out of control

3

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

POGO, independent and brutally honest, it is the beacon of enlightenment for our democracy. No other public service provides more vital information.

3

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

I work as a documentary film producer for political activist causes and war costs accountability of the US military industrial complex. I can say without reserve that POGO is a true American hero.

4

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

truly outstanding group. the position of whistleblowers has not been easy in Obama administration. POGO continues to bring issues and unknown issues to the public while protecting those who have brought them to POGO. POGO continues to be the only place where whistleblowers can go to have the issues which concern them brought to the public while they receive the best protection>

2

General Member of the Public

Rating: 4

I recommend getting rid of the acronym. It has no meaning of connotations which could be in any way of positive value for anyone unfamiliar with the organization.

6

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

The Project on Government Oversight is a resource I can't do without. It has consistently put out non-partisan unbiased analyses of where my tax dollars are spent...and misspent. I know I can count on POGO whether the economy is good or bad, whether the President is Republican or Democrat, and no matter how Congress is split. They just want to get to the truth of how our money is spent and shine a light on on obvious excesses. They don't flood my inbox with every trivial budgetary foible, just the really egregious misdeeds.

Thank you POGO! Keep up the good work.

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7

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

Danielle Brian and POGO are one of the few organizations I feel I can turn to without having to filter their opinions. They consistently present both sides of the story, avoid inflammatory rhetoric, and support their point with straightforward and reliable facts. Also, they cover subjects that need covering that most of the media is ominously silent about

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5 Penny32

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I'm a third-time Auckland Mayoral candidate, campaigning against over 30 years of Neo-liberal 'Rogernomic$' - based upon the unsubstantiated myth and mantra 'public is bad - private is good'.

The reality, of course, is that as soon as you get into the contracting-out (privatisation) of public services - you get into 'contract management'.

Central and local government staff are regarded as being 'too dumb' to know how to do that - so they hire private sector consultants to 'project manage' the private sector works contractors, who, in so many cases then sub-contract.

So - by the time you get to down and dirty to the 'boots and overalls' who actually do something productive - you may go through up to four layers of 'pin-stripe suits' all clipping the ticket.

How on earth can that be more 'cost-effective' spending of public tax and rates monies compared with running public services by directly-employed staff under the 'not-for-profit' public service model?

Your WONDERFUL POGO research from September 2011 proving contracting out is 'bad business' and twice as expensive as in- house service provision, is the only research that I found, that makes this case.

Thank you POGO - SO much for all your hard work on this HUGE issue.

I have used your research whenever and wherever I can.

Locally, nationally and internationally, it's time for the worldwide 99% to realise that globally, collectively, we have been 'sold a pup' and it is time to ROLL BACK 'ROGERNOMIC$'!

Keep up the GREAT work!

Kind regards

Penny Bright

2016 Auckland Mayoral candidate.

'Her Warship' ;)

6

Donor

Rating: 5

I learned of POGO through the Center for Defense Information, which I have supported for over 30 years. Both seem dedicated to improving government by identifying agencies, activities and projects that need improving, and by supporting whistleblowers and their protections. Their writings and conclusions appear fact-based, well researched and well reasoned.

5

Donor

Rating: 5

I have been a donor to POGO since the late 1980's. Their success in keeping the government honest is exemplified in the growth they have sustained in since. In these times when the media is shirking their responsibilities for investigative reporting, we desperately need someone to take up the burden. POGO has demonstrated their determination to do whatever possible to keep a bright light on government activities. I am grateful for their capabilities and experience. I will continue to give what I can to help the work. I wish it were more.

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5

Donor

Rating: 5

I have been associated with POGO for a number of years and have their work to be of the greatest importance. The are effective in their work, and they communicate what is happening inside the government. I will continue to be a donor in the future.

2

Donor

Rating: 5

I love and trust POGO. They do an incredible job of revealing blundering, corruption, and incompetency in our government. I read their newsletter every time it comes out and I donate to them regularly.

Without someone looking over their shoulder, our government would run off the rails. POGO is a crucial voice for citizens, and I believe that they make a substantial contribution to improving the way the US is run.

1

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

While I have no particular experience with POGO, my general impression is favorable.

British Philosopher Frances Bacon, (the scientists not the artist) said, "Knowledge is
Power." When you know something you have the power to act.

Louis Brandies, writing in his classic book, Other People's Money, (101 years ago!) said you can have great wealth or democracy but not both. He is best remembered for his quote,"Sunlight is the best disinfectant, and an electric light the best policeman."

Perhaps the best illustration, which you should obtain permission to print is the cartoon by the late great Herblock, the editorial cartoonist of the Washington Post.

His cartoon showing two middle aged bureaucrats with 1950s suits look at a paper with the signs "U.S. Department of..." They are examining a document. One says to the other, "Well, we certainly botched that job. What will we stamp it, Secret or Top Secret?"

That says it all. Everything else is data and details.

Best,
Reno

2

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

I find POGO very informative and keep me up to date on the Shenanigans going on in our Government. Everyone should subscribe to it if you want to stay informed on how your Tax Dollars are Spent!

1

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

I find POGO to be an essential non-profit that provides top notch fully vetted information that would not be available or reported on in standard media. The different areas and programs of government that they review would go unabated and unaccountable without POGO's oversight in a world that sorely needs as much transparency as possible ... (this is seen in the many times that Congress relies on POGO's testimony as THE subject matter experts) ...

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1

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

The issues and information gathered by POGO is staggering. Everything you wanted to know but afraid to ask or didn't think possible is available through the work and dedication of all the staff @ POGO.

1

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

"Accountability" is one of the most overused and under-implemented concepts inside our democratic government. "Accountability" does not come without transparency and real and untainted information. POGO does more than any organization I know to assure American citizens that our government IS accountable. Thank you, POGO, for your important contributions and efforts to making ours a more genuine democracy. I salute you!

2

Donor

Rating: 5

Transparency is the key to effective government and it does not come by accident, but by hard work. POGO exemplifies this hard work

3 Johnnie C.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

pogo does things and asks the questions noone else will

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2

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I fully endorse what the project on government oversight is doing 110%

2

Donor

Rating: 5

No telling what the US government would do if left without POGO. Even with that oversight, they still do stupid and terrible things, but I think it would be far worse if someone wasn't checking up on them

1

Donor

Rating: 5

POGO does the job that the GAO and departmental IGs ought to be doing better. I count on them to keep me informed about fraud, abuse, and downright silliness in government.

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1

Donor

Rating: 4

I admire their tenacity and thoroughness and so donate annually. They are especially good on looking at defense procurement, an area which is always rife with inefficiency and, sadly, corruption in virtually all nations. You need an independent watchdog to try and keep things open and honest.

1 Jeffery6

Client Served

Rating: 5

This organization provides the oversight of our government that Congress should be doing, but is failing miserably at. It takes groups like POGO made of private citizens to weed out the waste, fraud and corruption in our federal government. It also tries to get the government back within its constitutionally delineated duties, because the federal government has grossly expanded between the limited responsibilities it was supposed to have - protect our liberties, provide for the common defence and promote international commerce.

3 Ffej

Donor

Rating: 5

I find the information presented in POGO indispensable. Few sources expose the ineptitude of government better than POGO. From insightful articles on the military industrial complex trying to sell an airplane that won't keep up, to the incompetence in building a nuclear recovery site that has had so many cost overruns it is infuriating. It should be REQUIRED reading by those in the halls of government, at every level. POGO pulls the curtain back on a government that costs all of us while enriching the few.

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3

Donor

Rating: 5

In my opinion POGO is the leader in pointing out government waste, abuse of whistle blowers, and the unbridled and unchecked spending of the Pentagon. I am much more enlightened to the abuse that goes on in our government because POGO is the watchdog. If only the lame media were as dedicated.

3

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

One of the few 501(c)(3) nongovernmental organizations working to make government accountable to the American citizen and taxpayer

1 Timothy36

Former staff

Rating: 5

A great organization, sharp, focused and effective.

1 Kay_37

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

I count on POGO to keep me informed on governmental issues that are of concern to every citizen in this country. POGO has exceed my expectations in this regard. They have dug deep and worked hard to protect us all. My hat is off to this organization.

1 Orgdevpro

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

POGO provides in depth reporting of government expenditures especially wasteful like Wisconsin Senator Proxmire used to do publicly via mass media.

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2

Volunteer

Rating: 5

POGO gets to the heart of issues so taxpayers can count that there money is used properly and wisely

1

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

I've followed their work for several years and always been impressed with their ability to get to the point. They give reliable advice, and motivate action without promoting craziness.
I trust and respect POGO's work.

1

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

POGO digs deep into issues about which every American citizen and taxpayer should care. I particularly appreciate the e-newsletter sent every Saturday.

1 Kathleen119

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

Valuable and proven resource for the concerned citizen

1

Donor

Rating: 5

Getting to the bottom of many issues and providing insight to readers so we can keep our government accountable is not easy. POGO does this very well.

1

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

POGO's research that helps keeps us informed about government is amazing! I especially rely on their information about inspectors general and whistleblowers to write academic papers. Danielle Bryan is wonderful!

1

Donor

Rating: 5

POGO does what no other organization dares to do -uncover the almost unthinkable waste, fraud, and pure malfeasance of defense industry contracting corruption, which is draining this country of money much-needed elsewhere. This is only one of the many things they tirelessly, fearlessly investigate, and they bring results; though not nearly enough, as they are up against long-entrenched, powerful (and quite indifferent) interests. POGO is invaluable to our practicing of anything remotely resembling democracy, and should be highly valued, and their efforts carefully nurtured.

2

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

I find POGO particularly insightful on US military over spending such as the f35 fighter jet. They have their facts in a row and give you a good insiight into why things went that way.

Donor

Rating: 5

I've been donating to POGO for a number of years now, since first finding out about this non-profit. The work that they do is indispensable to holding our government accountable. I look forward to their e-mails to keep me up to date on government spending. I plan on supporting them for many years to come.

1

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

This the type of agency the government needs to keep wasteful and unnecessary spending down. There is absolutely no excuse for the useless projects and constant cost overruns that are now occurring. If the Republicans really want to cut the budget they need to heed POGO's excellent advice.

1 Lee_53

Volunteer

Rating: 5

It is vital that government is held accountable and remains transparent in its dealings with the public. That is why I support POGO in supporting whistle blowers on government fraud, corruption and just plain incompetence.

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1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

In a world where Industry, mega corporations and governments routinely lie to protect their own interests at the expense of the public, it is vitally important that organizations exist to speak Truth to Power. As someone who is active regarding the mistreatment of animals, the environment and transparency in our government, I applaud POGO for its stand and efforts to make our government more transparent accountable for its actions.

Donor

Rating: 5

One of, if not THE best non-profits around. I don't contribute to many, but I do to POGO. I consider them the most responsible and capable organization trying to keep our government accountable.

nozero

General Member of the Public

Rating: 4

As a taxpayer and a retired federal employee, POGO helps me keep up with what's going on in our government both behind the scenes and within public view.

Previous Stories

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

I appreciate the role POGO plays. You do work that not all of us can begin to do. Keeping our government straight and above board is one of the most important roles I can imagine!

General Member of the Public

Rating: 4

Thanks to this nonprofit for taking on a complex and time consuming task. I have vary high standards for nonprofits, and I am happy to be able to support their work

Donor

Rating: 5

My wife and I are strong supporters of POGO. The service it provides to whistle blowers is invaluable.

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Donor

Rating: 5

My wife and I are in our seventies. Over the years we have had little success in finding "watchdog " organizations whose watchdog roles are not compromised. POGO is a rare exception.

ErinHarris

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

Those on the hunt for real news soon despair of mainstream media, but it's also easy to despair of keeping up with online resources. E-mail is eating my life, so I'm forced to cut back -- but I never think of cutting POGO. Theirs is a larger vision -- evident in their overall approach to and understanding of the issues, which goes far beyond presenting stories that won't be stale in a week.

Katherine (Erin) Harris, Albuquerque, NM

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

How would I know what my government is really doing with all that money?
Thank you POGO
Margaret Noyes DNP, RN

Donor

Rating: 5

Without Oversight from Non-Profits like POGO-Project On Government Oversight Whistleblowers would not be able to provide both American Taxpayers and the Offices of the Inspector General with Invaluable Information on Government Waste and Fraud. Revealing DOD's F-35 program Boondoggle and the Stealth "Hidden" Price$ for a new B-21 Bomber are just a few reasons to support this organization and they have the expertise to back it up with Fact!

2

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

POGO's work is essential, and if not unique, at least extraordinary.

POGO's nonpartisan research, watch dogging, public education and advocacy are all the more essential when the nation faces so many critical challenges in the face of constrained resources, and as when special interests spend billions of dollars seeking to snow the public and public decision makers with blizzards of misleading propaganda.

1

Donor

Rating: 5

I continue to follow POGO's research and donate. I am impressed with both their scope and ability to make progress on single issues.

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3

Donor

Rating: 4

I support POGO regularly because I believe the focus, ethics and dedication of the group aligns with my values of government accountability, transparency, efficiency. As a small federal government contracting business I am also aware of the waste of many contracting services and believe POGO has targeted several wasteful programs. The website is also a helpful clearinghouse of policy and investigative info.

3

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

POGO is an organization that actually helps and is effective. Many non-profits, even those that mean well, get little accomplished. I head a non-profit myself and know POGO is one of the best.

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2

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

POGO is an important tool in the almost futile attempt to allow the public to know what the government is doing. It is unfortunate that we need to have this type of organization but we do. I am very happy to support it and its goals.

1

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

POGO merits tremendous admiration and support as the preeminent government "watchdog" today. I hope readers find my opinion credible on the basis of my considerable personal experience as a government "watchdog," as the author of The Art of the Watchdog (with co-author David Eichenthal, SUNY Press 2016), and as a professor of public management teaching investigative techniques at John Jay College of Criminal Justice in the City University of New York.

1 willyA

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

POGO is a very effective organization keeping Govt Dept accountable- awesome work!

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2

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

It's is very clear that with today's "special interest" running amuck in Washington Govt. is highly influenced by either commercial or political partisan interests in a way that does not allow Govt. Dept.s to do their jobs or they bring undue outside pressure not to do the right thing in supporting the public interest.

POGO is in fact, a sad but necessary body to keep Govt. true to it's constituents and keep bureaucratic interests in check!

Willy A

1 Jawara P.

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

I must say, they're among the best as i have seen.

1 Leslie98

Client Served

Rating: 5

Well, it's not like corruption, crime, & criminals are disappearing, or policing themselves, is it? We have never needed POGO more. God bless you & the wonderful work you do.

1

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

POGO is awesome--it's a small organization with a lot of heart and serious dedication to making our government more transparent. Keep up the good work!

7

Donor

Rating: 5

Year after year, the Project on Government Oversight proves that it is peerless as Washington's premier watchdog of the federal bureaucracy, as well as a safe haven for heroic whistleblowers who, at great personal risk, step up and expose government abuses and misdeeds.

3 Joseph47

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

this charity helps us who need insight on the U.S. Government and the world I would recommend this charity to everyone/everybody that I know and people that I don't even know.

3

Volunteer

Rating: 5

If you want to know what is really going on, this is the place to find out!

3 Franklin K.

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

The truth is very important. This organization takes the time to point out issues in a concise manor that everyone can understand.

4

Donor

Rating: 5

I feel that POGO is one of the most important NGO's that I support. The work they do is essential in researching how our government is functioning and how we can help change things. I only wish I could afford to give more, but as a retired person my resources are very limited.

2

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

POGO is an extremely effective and efficienct organization.

2 Carol166

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

I truly appreciate all the information you pass on to us. I do not always read everything, but I at least know where one of the best sources for truthful information is, and I always look forward to getting your emails. Thank you.

2

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

The Project On Government Oversight, Inc. keeps the public up-to-date on all things related to holding government's feet to the fire. This nonprofit is the epitome of a watchdog group. Nothing that the government does escapes its attention.

3

Volunteer

Rating: 5

The Project on Government Oversight works tirelessly to uncover and expose the Never Ending Wasteful Spending that our Government is involved in Every Day. If all of the Hard Working American People knew the extent of America's Black Budget, they would Join Together and Vote All of the Congress Members that participate in these Actions Out of Office!

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4

General Member of the Public

Rating: 4

This group does an excellent job of exposing and explaining in layman terms the multi layered problems of waste and over spending that our Tax Payer Dollars are spent on. They often go againest the Public Information stories provided by our Government, and are not afraid to tell the truth on many subjects taht concern our Health and Safety. I rely on them to get the real story on all of todays hot issues.