What is a Dear Colleague letter?

Dear Colleague letters are official correspondence between members of Congress that lawmakers use to gauge or build support or opposition for legislation or other causes. They can also be informative, providing details about House and Senate operations such as new security measures and entrance closures. As an example, here’s a DC letter about recording a video message for the troops.

Here is a Wikipedia article on Dear Colleague letters if you would like to know more.

Where else can I find these documents? 

This site is the largest publicly available archive of free Dear Colleague letters. Some members of Congress release a selection of their letters on their websites, but this the most comprehensive and searchable source for letters from all members on a wide variety of topics. A few other sites and publications have large stores of Dear Colleague letters hidden behind a paywall. While the entirety of our database is available only to our subscribers, we remain committed to maintaining this as the largest archive of free Dear Colleague letters.

How do I search for my member of Congress?

The easiest way is to search by the member’s first and last names.

Why is this Dear Colleague letter coded in the wrong subject? 

Congressional offices determine the subjects for each letter. While we may think some of them are incorrect, we leave the subject codes in their original form without alteration.

Why are there duplicates?

Congressional offices will often send out another Dear Colleague letter on the same topic if they have gained sponsors or other support for their cause. While we try not to repeat the same letter over and over,  it’s bound to happen sometimes due the large volume of documents we make available.