'Extraordinary' corporate revolt over campaign donations shakes political world

Some of the country’s largest firms are scrambling to distance themselves from last week’s insurrection at the US Capitol by freezing or reassessing their political donationssending tremors through a political system that has relied for decades on the predictable flow of corporate financial support.

Companies such Google, Coca-Cola and UPS all have pledged to suspend contributions across the board, while others took aim specifically at lawmakers they viewed as complicit in President Donald Trump’s effort to disrupt the certification of Joe Biden’s election.
This is extraordinary. It’s corporate America saying, ‘Enough,’ ” said Richard Levick, the CEO of LEVICK, a Washington-based public relations firm. “Capitalism is trying to ride to the rescue of a political system that doesn’t have an answerfor Trump’s conduct.
The Democrat-led House of Representatives plans to vote Wednesday to impeach Trump por “incitement of insurrection,” but convicting Trump would be a tall order in the narrowly divided Senate.
Business PACs are significant players in politics, accounting for more than $ 360 million in federal contributions during the 2020 cycle — con sobre 57% of the money flowing to GOP candidates, de acuerdo con la nonpartisan Center for Responsive Politics, which tracks political donations.
“Nunca he visto nada como esto,” said Fred Wertheimer, who runs the watchdog group Democracy 21, of the corporate retreat in the wake of the riot by pro-Trump supporters. “The key is: Is this temporary or is this real?”
To do this for two or three weeks, and after the heat falls off, go back to business as usual isn’t going to solve anyone’s problems,” él agregó.
Wertheimer and others in the campaign-finance reform world said the corporate reexamination could provide a needed push to overhaul election laws and center them on small-dollar contributions. A measure advanced by Democrats, who will soon control both congressional chambers and the White House, would give federal candidates as much as a 6-to-1 match of public funds for small donations.
Democrats have become increasingly adept at attracting small-dollar donations: En el 2020 election cycle alone, por poco 15 million grassroots donors contributed a staggering $ 4.8 billion to Democratic groups and candidates up and down the ballot via the online fundraising platform ActBlue.
Other reformers on Monday blasted companies that opted to freeze donations to Republicans and Democrats alikegiven that only Republicans voted against certifying Trump’s decisive White House loss.
These corporationsannouncements are nothing more than a PR stuntand a bad one at that,” Tiffany Muller, the president of End Citizens United, dijo en un comunicado. “There’s only one partyand specifically 147 members of Congresswho incited the violent and deadly assault on our Capitol,” ella añadió.
At least one firm, greeting card maker Hallmark, has asked for refunds, requesting that two GOP senators who objected last week, Josh Hawley of Missouri and Roger Marshall of Kansas, return their PAC donations.
In announcing their decisions, many companies described their actions as only temporary suspensions to review their political giving. The chemical company Dow, sin embargo, promised a more lasting punishment for those who backed Trump in Congress. It said it would cut off donations to lawmakers who voted against certifying the election for the entire two-year terms of the House members involved and the six-year terms of senators.
More important than money or the demands for refunds is the message that corporate America has delivered to Washington, said Michael Malbin, a political science professor at the University of Albany and an expert on campaign money.
The fact that major organizations are saying that they are disgusted matters,” él dijo. “This is a public statement about what they believe is right and wrong.

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