Progress happens in the states
The Center for Public Integrity has a great report out on lobbying reform laws passed in statehouses across the country -- 24 states have passed lobbying disclosure laws since 2003. And eight more are currently considering or working on revamping lobbyist disclosure.
Contrast that with the U.S. Senate: "In comparison, while the Senate Office of Public Records began putting federal lobby spending reports on the Internet in 2001, federal lobbying disclosure laws haven't been modified in the last eight years."
Facts like these lend credence to David Sirota and Nathan Newman's ideas behind the Progressive Legislation Action Network, a new organization dedicated to spreading research and advocacy tools to "forward-thinking state legislators" in all 50 states.
Sirota and Newman wrote a long piece for In These Times making the case that there's a lot of room for serious progressive reforms at the state level.