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Tech Industry

Silicon Valley plays politics

Two decades after its birth, Silicon Valley is learning how to play politics. In this multimedia special report, NEWS.COM looks at who gets the valley's vote, why it has trouble deciding on a candidate, and what difference its support makes inside the Beltway.

Since the PC revolution began to unfold two decades ago, Silicon Valley has been economically precocious, taking an increasingly prominent role in markets worldwide. Until recently, however, the valley has been slow to translate that economic clout into political power. Now, the valley is learning how to play politics, preparing itself to protect its interests in Washington and state legislatures across the country. In this multimedia special report, NEWS.COM looks at who gets the Silicon Valley vote, why it has trouble deciding on a candidate, and what difference those votes make inside the Beltway.

Growing up is hard to do
By Mike Yamamoto
Silicon Valley is getting old enough to take political responsibility, but its maturity is stunted by naivete and an ambivalence about Democratic fiscal policy and Republican social philosophy that keeps it deep in swing-vote territory.

Deep pockets and short arms
By Jane Black and Mike Yamamoto
The industry generates so much money that Washington is forced to take notice. But the hard numbers show that so far the candidates themselves aren't seeing much of that bounty.

The battlefields
By Mike Yamamoto
In the last year, the industry has focused primarily on five key policy issues, with mixed results.