The Congressional Research Service

The Congressional Research Service (CRS) was established in 1914 to provide p0licy and legal analysis to committees and members of Congress.  The CRS's services are available to elected officials throughout the legislative process with research divisions in the following areas:

  • American law
  • Domestic social policy
  • Foreign affairs, defense and trade
  • Government and finance
  • Resources, science and industry

However, the reports produced by CRS are held in confidence in a closed web program called CRS Web.  Members of Congress and their staffs can access CRS-produced resources at any time, but the reports are not made public unless released by a member of Congress.

The Center for Democracy & Technology maintains an open source web site called Open CRS that enables members of the general public to upload reports that they have obtained.

You can search for uploaded reports by keyword from the site's homepage and subscribe to an RSS feed for notification of newly uploaded reports.  CRS also links to other organizations that maintain collections of CRS reports here, including the Federation of American Scientists.

If you would like to request a copy of a CRS report from your representative, Open CRS offers its suggestions in this online guide.