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Big U.S. companies slash donations to politicians after Trump election challenge

Stock MarketsFeb 20, 2021 08:35PM ET
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© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: Supporters of U.S. President Donald Trump gather in Washington

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Ten U.S. corporations slashed donations to candidates seeking federal office by more than 90% in January, after pledging to cut off giving to the Republicans who supported former President Donald Trump's attempt to overturn his election defeat.

None of the political action committees of 10 major companies reviewed by Reuters, including Microsoft Corp (NASDAQ:MSFT), Walmart (NYSE:WMT) Inc, AT&T Inc (NYSE:T) and Comcast Corp (NASDAQ:CMCSA), donated to any of the 147 congressional Republicans who voted to support Trump's claims just hours after his supporters launched a deadly assault on the U.S. Capitol.

Disclosures to the Federal Election Commission ahead of a Saturday filing deadline showed the group of corporate PACs affiliated with those 10 companies made $13,000 in new donations to candidates in January. The reports were the first by the PACs to detail contributions made since the Jan. 6 Capitol attack.

The money donated during the month was less than one-tenth the roughly $190,000 the 10 company PACs gave candidates in January 2017, and tiny relative to the roughly $10 million donated to candidates during the 2019-2020 election season. The 147 lawmakers who voted to overturn President Joe Biden's victory had received more than $2 million from those 10 PACs during the last two-year political cycle.

Only committees tied to two of the companies - General Electric (NYSE:GE) Co and American Express Co (NYSE:AXP) - reported any new giving to federal candidates in January.

American Express' PAC gave $5,000 to Republican Senator John Thune of South Dakota, while GE's gave $5,000 to Representative Adam Kinzinger of Illinois, a prominent Republican Trump critic, and $1,000 to Representative Rick Larsen of Washington, a Democrat.

Political giving usually slows down in the months after a U.S. general election and money from corporate political action committees is a small slice of the funds raised by political campaigns.

But the paucity of corporate-affiliated giving in January points to a slower start in one corner of political finance ahead of the 2022 midterm elections.

Corporate PACs cannot donate money from the company treasury but generally serve as a conduit for contributions from managers and shareholders.

Committees affiliated with Best Buy, State Street Corp (NYSE:STT), Dow Inc and Nike Inc (NYSE:NKE) did not report new donations to any candidates in January.

While more than a thousand PACs are associated with corporate America, the 10 reviewed by Reuters include major companies which made clear public statements that they would throttle back donations following the Jan. 6 Capitol attack.

Big U.S. companies slash donations to politicians after Trump election challenge
 

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Comments (6)
Stephen Be
Stephen Be Feb 21, 2021 3:45PM ET
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When are the REDS going admit that ON THE DIRECT COMMAND OF Republican Trump, more people were murdered on the US Capitol steps than were killed a war zone Benghazi? If Benghazi was worth 1000 of eight investigations culminating in BUPKUS... why aren' the REDS screaming for investigations into Republicans RESPONSIBLE for 5 American deaths on American soil? The PARTY is more important than the country?   Sounds like the POLITBURO under Stalin, Krushchev and Gobachev. Punishing members for UNSolidarity. Isn't that what CENSURING REPUBLICANS who voted FOR IMPEACHMENT was about? The REDPUBLICAN Party gave a Traitor TWO PASSES on SEDITION and TREASON.
Steffen vdm
Steffen vdm Feb 21, 2021 2:23AM ET
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What kind of 3rd world country is this? Companies paying politicians? And then people start complaining about presidents having dubious businesses. Corruption seems to be in the political DNA in the US. From high to low, from left to right
Patron Silver
Patron Silver Feb 21, 2021 2:23AM ET
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wow u just now figured this out?
Art Fire
Art Fire Feb 20, 2021 11:36PM ET
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Trump was obviously the worst president in United States history. He left the economy shattered with millions out of work, under a disaster of conditions with a pandemic, twice impeached. He led an attack on our US capital that killed 5 people including a police officer, and 2 other police officers to commit suicide later. You should be ashamed.
Casador Del Oso
Casador Del Oso Feb 20, 2021 11:36PM ET
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Wrong. The worst president was Lyndon Baines Johnson who sent all those troops to Vietnam and just abandoned them by not seeking a second term.
Art Fire
Art Fire Feb 20, 2021 11:36PM ET
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Casador Del Oso Maybe if Trump didn't dodge the draft 5 times it would have worked out.
Benjamin Troyer
Benjamin Troyer Feb 20, 2021 11:36PM ET
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short-minded people like you are diamond dozen Obama was 10 times worse she started three different wars and had like 10 different fraud criminal acts while President never got investigated for anything.but fools like you call a president that never had any control of covid-19 when started by China!!
Catholic Man
CatholicMan Feb 20, 2021 11:36PM ET
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LOL, silly comment
Stephen Be
Stephen Be Feb 20, 2021 11:36PM ET
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Casador Del Oso  Nixon committedTREASON by doing exactly what Trump got CAUGHT RED HANDED TWICE doing, corrupting a Democratic Election. I call it TREASON because both were ACTS OF WAR upon America. The Capitol Steps Murders were SEDITION because Trump VERBALLY COMMANDED his legion to insurrection. theBIG Question is: WHY are hated EMS protecting him and all REDS protecting Trump? Could it be the National Enquirer Self Contents confiscated by AG Barr from David ***** Where is David these days? Or did he hang to death in his cell like Epstein?
Darren Caris
Darren Caris Feb 20, 2021 11:10PM ET
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why not? Dems are easily bought so money will go to them.
Patron Silver
Patron Silver Feb 20, 2021 11:10PM ET
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jellyfish repubs take highest bidder money
Kenneth nelson
grasshopper Feb 20, 2021 11:05PM ET
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Impeach Biden
Art Fire
Art Fire Feb 20, 2021 9:44PM ET
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I'm sad what the republican politicians have become, and the path they lead so many I love down. A path of hate for government and destruction of our institutions, and so much fear and anxiety. Burning down hope, ***in in the ashes, they left everyone scared for the future. You should be ashamed.
Trader Man
Trader Man Feb 20, 2021 9:44PM ET
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when I ever I see these type of comments they remind me of what North Korean news anchor would say.
Stephen Be
Stephen Be Feb 20, 2021 9:44PM ET
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Trader Man  Funny you mention North Korea, who, thanks to Trump,  have TWO BRAND NEW NUCLEAR TEST SITES.  How much of a cut did Trump extort from Kim Jong Ill from the NK Counterfeiting operations to secure NUKE PROTECTION from the GOP?
 
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