Here Are the U.S. Companies Hitting Pause on Political Donations
(Bloomberg) -- The list of companies that say they are withholding political contributions after the Jan. 6 U.S. Capitol riot continues to grow steadily.
The companies fall into a few broad categories: Those going after specific Republican lawmakers who voted against the certification of the presidential election, those going after objectors in general, and those withholding all contributions for now regardless of political party or whether a lawmaker participated in the effort. More than 130 Republican representatives and eight GOP senators voted to object to at least one state’s electoral count, in support of President Donald Trump’s efforts to overturn the results.
On Wednesday, Charles Schwab Corp. took it a step further than the rest, saying it would shut down its political action committee “in light of a divided political climate and an increase in attacks on those participating in the political process.”
This list below includes many major companies but is not comprehensive. It doesn’t include companies that for now are saying only that they are reviewing future contributions or always decide donations on a case-by-case basis according to their interests at the time. The contributions below came from beat reporters and editors throughout Bloomberg News:
Closing Its PAC:
CHARLES SCHWAB: The brokerage said it will shut down its PAC “in light of a divided political climate and an increase in attacks on those participating in the political process.” And as far as any money it has left over? Remaining funds from the PAC will be donated to the Boys & Girls Club of America and historically Black colleges and universities.
Action Against Specific Individuals:
HALLMARK CARDS: The maker of greeting cards was very specific in the message it wants to send U.S. Senators Josh Hawley and Roger Marshall: Give us our money back. The Kansas City, Missouri-based company said it’s seeking reimbursement for the $7,000 it donated to Hawley, of Missouri, and the $5,000 it gave newly elected Marshall, of Kansas, over the last two years. The Republicans objected to the certification of electors for President-elect Joe Biden.
General Action Against Objectors:
AIRBNB: The online marketplace for travelers says it will “continue to uphold our community policies by banning violent hate group members when we learn of such memberships.”’ The company’s political action committee will update its framework and withhold support from those who voted against the certification of the presidential election results.”
AMAZON.COM: The online retailer has suspended contributions to any member of Congress who voted to object to the election results, spokeswoman Jodi Seth said in an email. “We intend to discuss our concerns directly with those Members we have previously supported and will evaluate their responses as we consider future PAC contributions,” Seth said.
AMERICAN EXPRESS: The credit-card company said Monday that its PAC wouldn’t support congressional members who tried “to subvert the presidential election results and disrupt the peaceful transition of power.”
AT&T: The telecom giant said its Federal PAC board held a call Monday and decided to halt contributions “to members of Congress who voted to object to the certification of Electoral College votes last week.”
BEST BUY: The electronics retailer said it will halt campaign contributions to the 147 members of Congress who objected to certifying the election results.
BLUE CROSS BLUE SHIELD: The health-insurer association “will suspend contributions to those lawmakers who voted to undermine our democracy,” Chief Executive Officer Kim Keck said in a statement issued Friday.
CISCO SYSTEMS: The world’s largest maker of networking equipment won’t provide any future contributions to the 147 representatives and senators who “attempted to prevent Congress from fulfilling its constitutional duty to certify a legitimate and fair presidential election.”
COMCAST: The company will suspend all political contributions to elected officials who voted against certification. The move “will give us the opportunity to review our political giving policies and practices,” the company said, citing “the appalling violence we witnessed at the U.S. Capitol last week.
DOW: The chemical company paused contributions by its PACs to members of Congress who voted to object to the certification. The suspension will remain in place for one election cycle, meaning it will last two years for lawmakers in the House of Representatives and six years for senators. “Dow is committed to the principles of democracy and the peaceful transfer of power,” the Midland, Michigan-based company said in a statement.
EDISON INTERNATIONAL: The Rosemead, California-based utility said it paused giving to U.S. House and Senate members on Jan. 7. The company also is implementing a “freeze of indefinite duration” on further campaign contributions to members of Congress who voted to overturn the results, spokesman Ron Gales said.
EXELON: The Chicago-based utility owner said it’s halting contributions to lawmakers who voted to contest the election as it conducts a review of its political activities.
GENERAL ELECTRIC: GE’s political action committee will suspend contributions to the lawmakers who voted last week to oppose the electoral college results. The PAC’s board voted Monday to halt donations for the duration of the current session of Congress, which ends in early January 2023, the company said.
G0LDMAN SACHS GROUP: The bank said it is still formulating measures that will probably curtail future political giving to the elected leaders who fought to overturn the 2020 result.
INTEL: The semiconductor maker said it won’t give money to members of Congress who voted against certification of the election.
KRAFT HEINZ: The food company said it’s re-evaluating the company’s PAC-giving criteria and have suspended future contributions to members of Congress who opposed the certification
MARRIOTT INTERNATIONAL: The hotel chain was among the first to say it is suspending donations to Republican senators who voted against certifying Biden, after considering the “destructive events” at the Capitol last week.
MASSMUTUAL: The insurer suspended donations to “any candidate who voted against certification of the 2020 Presidential election results for any state.”
MASTERCARD: The credit card company said it will stop donating to lawmakers who opposed certification.
NASDAQ: The company’s PAC said it will pause political donations for the next several months and in addition halt “for the foreseeable future” any contributions to elected officials who voted to object to the results.
NIKE: The sports-shoe and apparel company said its PAC supports candidates “who understand our business and whose values align with our mission of serving athletes. These nonpartisan values rely upon upholding the principles of democracy. Although we’re not yet making contributions at this point in the election cycle, Nike’s PAC will not support any member of Congress who ignores these principles, including those who voted to decertify the Electoral College results.”
STATE STREET: The asset manager said it will not support lawmakers who participated in “efforts to undermine our democracy.” In addition it plans to set up a process t ensure it’s not supporting any candidates who “we believe are subverting the core democratic principles of our Constitution, especially election outcomes.”
VERIZON COMMUNICATIONS: The phone company will suspend contributions to any member of Congress who voted to object to the election results, Rich Young, a spokesman, said in an interview. “We watched last week’s events and were saddened,” Young said.
WALMART: The biggest retail chain said it is “indefinitely suspending contributions to those members of Congress who voted against the lawful certification of state Electoral College votes.”
WALT DISNEY: The world’s largest entertainment company said it won’t make contributions in 2021 to lawmakers who voted to reject the certification. “In the immediate aftermath of that appalling siege, members of Congress had an opportunity to unite -- an opportunity that some sadly refused to embrace,” Disney said in a statement.
Pausing All Contributions:
3M: The maker of Post-it notes, medical masks and chemical additives has paused all state and federal political contributions through March and plans to reassess its spending policy in April. The St. Paul, Minnesota-based company imposed the spending hold on Jan. 7, the day after the violent clashes in Washington.
AMERICAN AIRLINES GROUP: The carrier will take a three-month break starting immediately from political giving to review its contributions. “When we resume, we will ensure we focus on a bipartisan array of lawmakers who support U.S. aviation, airline workers and our values, including bringing people together,” the carrier said in a statement.
ARCHER-DANIELS-MIDLAND: The company, one of the world’s largest agricultural commodity traders, will suspend making any new contributions until it has completed a review of all of its political donation policies “to ensure that these policies fully reflect ADM’s values as a company.”
BLACKROCK: The world’s largest asset manager is pausing contributions to campaigns of public officials through its PAC, citing “the horrific events in the nation’s capital.” The firm “will conduct a thorough review of the events and evaluate how we will focus our political activity going forward,” Kate Fulton, BlackRock’s head of U.S. public policy, said in a memo.
BOEING: The aerospace and defense company said it won’t make any political contributions at this time given the current environment. It will continue to “evaluate future contributions to ensure that we support those who not only support our company, but also uphold our country’s most fundamental principles.”
BP: The oil giant is pausing all contributions for six months, at which time its PAC will “re-evaluate its criteria for candidate support.”
CARGILL: The crop trader said in a statement it is “immediately and indefinitely suspending political contributions in light of all that has transpired in politics in recent months.”
CBOE GLOBAL MARKETS: The options-exchange operator is temporarily pausing all contributions.
CHENIERE ENERGY: The Houston-based company is pausing donations from its political action committee to individual candidates.
CITIGROUP: The bank will temporarily stop all political contributions in the current quarter. “We want you to be assured that we will not support candidates who do not respect the rule of law,” Candi Wolff, Citi’s head of global government affairs, said in a memo to employees.
CME GROUP: The world’s largest futures exchange owner said it’s suspending all political contributions “for the foreseeable future.”
COCA-COLA: The beverage company said it will suspend political giving following contributions to the Biden inauguration. The move was made “in light of the unlawful and violent events in our nation’s capital last week. These events will long be remembered and will factor into our future contribution decisions,” the company said in an email.
CONOCOPHILLIPS: The largest independent U.S. oil exploration company said Monday it suspended all political contributions for at least six months and is reviewing its policies.
DUKE ENERGY: The Charlotte, North Carolina-based utility said it was pausing federal contributions for 30 days.
FACEBOOK: The social-media company is pausing all of its PAC contributions “for at least the current quarter while we review our policies,” spokesman Andy Stone said.
FIRSTENERGY: The Ohio-based power provider is pausing all political contributions while it evaluates its participation in the political process. The company wants to ensure its donations align with its “corporate values, behaviors and strategies,” spokeswoman Jennifer Young said in an emailed statement.
FORD MOTOR: The automaker suspended new contributions from its employee PAC “for now” because “events over the past year have underscored the need for a broader, ongoing discussion about other relevant considerations when it comes to our employee PAC.”
FREEPORT-McMoRan: The miner, which sponsors a federal PAC and various local PACs in the states where it operates, said that “in light of the recent events,” its committees have suspended contributions to candidates and will be undertaking a review of such contributions in the future.
GENERAL MOTORS: A spokeswoman said GM’s had not yet decided its 2021 PAC giving and has now “paused new contributions.” The company in 2020 had “enhanced the character and public integrity criteria for making contributions and that will help to guide our decisions moving forward.”
GILEAD SCIENCES: The biopharmaceutical company said it will “temporarily suspend all political contributions by the Gilead Political Action Committee.”
HILTON: The hotel company says it will not be making political donations “indefinitely” and committed to “any future donations being shared equally across the major parties and only after careful assessment of the recipient’s voting record.” Hilton initially suspended its PAC in March because of the impact of the pandemic.
INTERCONTINENTAL EXCHANGE: The parent company of the New York Stock Exchange suspended political donations from its political action committee indefinitely, according to a company spokesperson.
JBS USA: The meat processor suspended all contributions from its bipartisan PAC and plans to reassess its criteria, a spokesman said.
JPMORGAN CHASE: The largest U.S. bank by assets said it’s planning a six-month suspension to both Republicans and Democrats.
KROGER: The grocery chain is “pausing PAC donations while we review our PAC-giving philosophy, and we plan to resume contributions once this assessment is completed,” Matt Perin, its head of government relations, said in a statement. “Kroger takes great care to ensure a bipartisan approach to supporting candidates and committees. Our giving strategy generally evolves over time as the political landscape changes.” He said the chain opposes violence in all forms, including last week’s riots.
MAJOR LEAGUE BASEBALL: MLB became the first major sports league to say it will halt political donations pending a review.
MARATHON PETROLEUM: The oil refiner said it will pause all political contributions while it re-evaluates its approach. “The violence that took place at the Capitol was appalling, and we condemn it unequivocally,” spokesman Jamal Kheiry said.
McDONALD’S: The hamburger chain said it has “already paused all of our political giving while we review our policies and procedures. Going forward, we will ensure that all contributions continue to align with our values and the purpose of our business.”
MICROSOFT: The software company’s PAC decided Friday it won’t make any political donations until it assesses the recent events. The company said its PAC regularly pauses donations in the first quarter of a new Congress but it will “take additional steps this year to consider these recent events and consult with employees.”
MORGAN STANLEY: The bank singled out members of Congress who opposed the move to certify President-elect Joe Biden’s election win, pausing its contributions to them.
PEPSICO: The soft-drink maker said the “peaceful transfer of power is a keystone of the American democratic process, and we categorically denounce the violence last week that attempted to disrupt this process. In light of these events, we are suspending all political contributions while conducting a full review to ensure they align with our company’s values and our shared vision going forward.”
SMITHFIELD FOODS: The top global pork producer paused all U.S. federal campaign contributions “until more facts are known” about last week’s events. “Along with millions of our fellow Americans, we were horrified by the recent violence at the U.S. Capitol,” said Keira Lombardo, Smithfield’s chief administrative officer.
SQUIRE PATTON BOGGS: The law firm and lobbying shop says it “suspended all of our PAC contributions in order to review our policies and criteria on a going forward basis.”
TYSON FOODS: The biggest U.S. meat company is halting all political action committee activity. The Springdale, Arkansas-based company said it will “review and consider the events of the past week.”
UNITED PARCEL SERVICE: The package-delivery company has suspended all contributions for now, a spokesperson said.
VALERO ENERGY: The oil refiner is pausing all political contributions and has no plans to resume them over the next few months. “We will continue to evaluate future contributions to assure they serve the best interest and values of our employees, shareholders, and the communities where we operate,” spokeswoman Lillian Riojas said.
AMERICAN INVESTMENT COUNCIL: The trade group for the private equity industry is halting all donations to candidates. The group is based about 2 miles from the Capitol and is backed including Carlyle Group Inc., Apollo Global Management Inc. and Blackstone Group Inc.
INVESTMENT COMPANY INSTITUTE: Washington’s leading trade association for the asset-management industry says it’s temporarily halting political donations pending a review, a decision that applies to giving to both Republicans and Democrats.
MANAGED FUNDS ASSOCIATION: The hedge fund industry’s main Washington trade group said it will reassess PAC spending.
LOAN SYNDICATIONS AND TRADING ASSOCIATION: The trade group that unites banks and investment firms that operate in the U.S. syndicated loan market is temporarily suspending PAC contributions as it reassesses its 2021 political strategy, according to a spokesman.
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