You would think every person running for office would have a background check, right? Well, not so fast there buckaroo. According to Jody Baden, the founder of Transparency in Politics, “You have to have a background check to work for the governor but not to be the governor.”

Baden founded Transparency in Politics in 2022 and worked with a local employment-screening company to create a background checks designed for political candidates.

According to an article in the Reno Gazette Journal by Mark Robison, when Baden was serving on the Washoe County School Board, she was amazed the only requirements to run for office were an up-to-date driver’s license, a check for the fee and voter eligibility. As she said, “There is less scrutiny to run for office than to get a job at Walmart.”

This has been a hot topic over the past year, especially after George Santos infamously won the U.S. representative seat for New York’s 3rd congressional district. After his election, it was discovered everything on his résumé was fabricated or an outright lie. Santos was later expelled from Congress.

What Transparency in Politics essentially does is verify the résumé of political candidates. What shocks us here at GroupOne Background Screening is this has not always been a requirement. We just assumed all candidates were vetted in some manner. Turns out we were naive.

Transparency in Politics officially verified its first candidate in Nevada with Kristopher Dahir, running for re-election on the Sparks City Council.

Dahir stated he was committed to living his life with integrity and honor, to include letting residents see his background check. He is now considered a “certified candidate” by Transparency in Politics, with a spot on its website

Candidates who want this seal of approval must pay $295 for a basic background check. The screening details two previous employers, the highest levels of education, criminal and military history, professional license certifications and counties lived in.

The background check is a bit more extensive for a U.S. senator than say, a city council member. We ask, what about New York representatives?

Based in Reno, Nevada, Transparency in Politics will accept background checks from any candidate in the U.S. looking for its “seal of approval.”

Baden’s belief is background checks should not only be up to the media or political opponents. As she stated in the article, her goal is two-fold – improve the landscape for political candidates and most importantly, improve the quality of candidates.

We couldn’t agree more.