I Guess It Isn’t the Money….

Dispatches from the Culture Wars reports:

“By employing a plethora of tax-dodging techniques, 30 multi-million dollar American corporations expended more money lobbying Congress than they paid in federal income taxes between 2008 and 2010, ultimately spending approximately $400,000 every day — including weekends — during that three-year period to lobby lawmakers and influence political elections, according to a new report from the non-partisan Public Campaign.

Despite a growing federal deficit and the widespread economic stability that has swept the U.S since 2008, the companies in question managed to accumulate profits of $164 billion between 2008 and 2010, while receiving combined tax rebates totaling almost $11 billion. Moreover, Public Campaign reports these companies spent about $476 million during the same period to lobby the U.S. Congress, as well as another $22 million on federal campaigns, while in some instances laying off employees and increasing executive compensation.”

To put these numbers in perspective, these corporations spent three times as much lobbying for preferential treatment as they paid in taxes.


  1. The first question every candidate needs to answer is where do you stand on removing corporate money from politics, combating the Citizens United ruling and its effects, and do you reject the help of third party expenditure money.

  2. Amen. I think the average Tea Partier believes more in the tooth fairy than all of America will magically be as collectively productive as possible to pay for universal health care, housing, etc.

    But Gingrich, Romney, or whoever is going to have tough time swinging enough in the voting middle if they don’t acknowledge business must also act responsibly- or there must be consequences to persuade them otherwise.

  3. Mr. Deppert, are unions considered “corporate money”? They contribute far more money to political candidates than most corporations. Be consistent in your position. If you want to eliminate “corporate money”, then union money should also be excluded.

  4. Labor Union PACs have never come close to contributing the campaign amounts of corporate board members, officers, layers of highly paid management, and stockholders. (That’s why claims processing of private health care companies costs 8 times more than it costs the government to process Medicare claims. For-profit health Insurance companies pay millions to individual corporate officers and managers. )

    Regulated PAC amounts are limited for both corporate and labor PACs. Now corporations can spend millions and billions on independent ads, and their customers will never know they are financing this path to higher prices on themselves because corporations don’t have to report what they spend on independent ads.

    Unions are not selling to the general public, or shipping jobs overseas, or amassing billions in profits.

    One relatively unknown multi-millionaire in Indiana now has the ability to spend more in campaign contributions on independent ads than the PAC contributions of all unionized public employees COMBINED, and it’s looking like the multi-millionaire is already headed that direction. But we’ll never know the total he spends because it’s not reportable as independent expenditures.

    Neither are we likely to learn which government contracts he’s seeking until AFTER they are awarded to him. By that time, it will be too late. The signatures will be on the dotted line, and your and my tax dollars will be paying the multi-millionaire to become a billionaire.

  5. Ms. Papas, you speak of government contracts and tax dollars going towards these corporations. I wonder if you consider the billions of tax dollars our government spent bailing out the auto industry and the UAW a “government contract”. You can’t have it both ways. If you want corporate money completely eliminated from politics, then you’ll have my support; but that means all corporate money – including the corporations called UAW, AFL-CIO, SIU, and any number of labor corporations that bilk tax dollars from the feds.

  6. I don’t want free enterprise capitalism without the needed check of unions to help keep management in-line any more than birthday cake without the ice cream. But, with the recent pummeling of Boeing to have more jobs be union (Washington) or have none at all (South Carolina), and the usurping of bankruptcy convention put bond investors behind laborers, President Obama made it emphatic where he stands.

    I’m as fed-up with the corruption of big power and money as most Americans. But, JednaVira speaks for many by saying if we’re to eliminate the ability to “lobby lawmakers and influence political elections”, there’s no way that can’t also include labor unions.

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