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Corporations Give More Money to Democrats:

The WSJ reports corporations have given substantially more money to the Democrats for their just-concluded convention than to the Republicans for theirs.

A list of Democratic convention events compiled by the Washington lobbying firm Quinn Gillespie & Associates LLC is three times as long as one it compiled for the Republican convention.

A separate study by the nonpartisan Campaign Finance Institute shows that 141 companies have donated $160 million to the host committee for the Democratic convention, compared with 80 companies and $100 million for the Republican convention.

Precise figures are impossible to produce because companies aren't required to disclose all of their spending at conventions, and host committees may report spending at a later date. But nonpartisan watchdogs have been monitoring spending by special interests in Denver. "There certainly seems to be more parties at the Democratic convention than [planned for] the Republican convention," said Nancy Watzman with the Sunlight Foundation.

The story also notes that this shift mirrors broader trends in corporate support for the two parties.

he attention that businesses are devoting to Democrats at the convention underscores a broader shift in political spending as the Democratic Party increases its power in Washington.

For the first time in at least a decade, corporations are spending more money to elect Democrats this fall than they are on Republicans. Data compiled by the nonpartisan Center for Responsive Politics show that corporations and their political action committees have contributed $115.9 million to Democratic candidates, the Democratic Party and outside political organizations this election cycle, compared with $111.5 million for Republicans. The data don't include donations from individuals.

That gives Democrats a 51% to 49% advantage over Republicans in corporate money.

One likely explanation is that corporate money follows those that are (or that corporations believe will be) in power. With Democrats in control of Congress, and Senator Obama expected to win in November, corporations are trying to ensure that they have a "place at the table." Another factor is that corporate donations are often influenced by the preferences of their Washington representatives, even if this is not in line with corporate interests. A third factor is that Democratic policies are better for some firms and some industries, particularly those that rely upon or benefit from increased government intervention in the economy. Whatever the ultimate reasons, however, the bottom line is the same: The GOP is not the exclusive party of big business.

Modus Ponens:
Yet another possibility is simply that corporate donors overwhelming believe that an Obama administration will prove a better steward of this troubled economy than will a McCain administration, with or without increased government intervention.
8.29.2008 9:51am
mad the swine (mail):
"One likely explanation is that corporate money follows those that are (or that corporations believe will be) in power. "

Well, duh :)

"Yet another possibility is simply that corporate donors overwhelming believe that an Obama administration will prove a better steward of this troubled economy than will a McCain administration, with or without increased government intervention."

Yeah, I'm sure the economy will be in excellent shape when it's run according to Shariah law...
8.29.2008 9:53am
Justin (mail):
mad the swine, please fill in the blank:

Step 1: Barack Obama, a Christian, gets elected President of a country that is 95% or so Christian and has a First Amendment, the world's most powerful army, a judiciary, and a Congress that is also 95% or so Christian.

Step 2: ______________

Step 3: Sharia law for everyone!
8.29.2008 10:34am
PC:
Step 2: Forced gay marriage.
8.29.2008 10:37am
Mohamed:
There seems to be an incomplete story here, I would like to see some sort of data on the type of corporations that are donating to each party. Just breaking down the numbers above the Democratic party recieved 1.13 million per corporation and the Republicans 1.25 million. These numbers are relatively equal and yet almost twice as many corporations donated to the Democratic party. Aside from just backing the winning horse it may also suggest the Democrat platfrom attracts a broader coalition of corproations. Perhaps the Democrats are succeeding in drawing funds from new and expanding industries (biotech, green energy, etc.) and the Republicans have to rely on older industries which are shrinking (oil and gas, finance, manufacturing).
8.29.2008 10:52am
therut:
I thought liberals hate corporation and BIG business. Hypocrits as usual.
8.29.2008 11:15am
SATA_Interface:
See, he wanted everyone to be forced into gay marriage and then be in the mandatory volunteer program to get our biometric data on file. Then when he busts out the new Sharia judicial system, he could have every one of us killed for being a gay. Now it makes sense!
8.29.2008 11:22am
Sarcastro (www):
It's a well known fact liberals hate America, yet they continue to accept donations from millions of them!

Hypocrits as usual.
8.29.2008 11:22am
sbron:
Large corporations are in favor of massive immigration (Bill Gates and H1-Bs, American Apparel, Agriprocessors,
Howard Industries.) Large companies are also in favor of racial preferences (Ford under Jacques Nasser, ATT, Toyota.)
Thus it is logical they would support the Democrats who
are much more uniformly in favor of these policies than Republicans.
8.29.2008 11:42am
sbron:
Also many large corporations are still headed by white males. Donating to Democrats, and especially Obama is simply a way to assuage their white male guilt. Too bad their white male employees have to pay the price (e.g. Ford's large-scale firings of older white employees in the late 90s.)
8.29.2008 11:46am
gab:
I would think the $10 trillion worth of deficits attributable to Reagan, Bush 1 and Bush 2 is a pretty big intervention in the economy.
8.29.2008 12:19pm
DCP:

I wouldn't read to much into this.

Spending money on a convention is partly an act of advertising - your brand to the attendees, your special interests to the power holders.

It's been no secret that the Democratic convention was going to be a much bigger affair than the low key event the Republicans have planned.

Why do corporations spend so much more money on the Super Bowl, than say an Arizona Cardinals regular season game? Is it because they prefer the Super Bowl teams or do they simply know the setting and audience will give them a lot more bang for their buck?

Yes, I know, the post also mentioned a shift in general spending, but I suspect this is mild as it is a myth that Republicans are the party of corporate donations. Democrats have always taken their share of corporate cash.

I would be more curious to see trends in total spending compared to past elections. I can't imagine corporate interests are very thrilled about either candidate, given that one is the posterboy for for eliminating special interest influence in Washington and the other is a staunch supporter of policies that corporations typically recoil from (unions, tax increases, reversal of tort reforms, etc...).
8.29.2008 12:51pm
TheOneEyedMan (www):
It could just be that the Democrats through a more expensive convention and then had to raise more money for it.
8.29.2008 12:58pm
Thales (mail) (www):
"A third factor is that Democratic policies are better for some firms and some industries, particularly those that rely upon or benefit from increased government intervention in the economy."

Yet another factor is that Republicans have in recent years in practice intervened in the economy in particularly senseless, wasteful and cronyistic ways, while continuing to crush future generations with a pile of debt, despite party rhetoric to the contrary of each of these things. Perhaps many firms and many industries see the damage and want to be governed more sensibly in the future, to the extent they are not just jockeying for position or a handout (which is by far the most likely explanation of this behavior).
8.29.2008 1:34pm
randal (mail):
Yes, it does seem - hm, plausible - that corporations are driven by results, not ideology, and are smart enough to look back over the last 16 years and figure out which half they did better during.
8.29.2008 5:48pm
jukeboxgrad (mail):
Democrats have always taken their share of corporate cash.


It would be nice if we had an actual two (or more) party system, instead of just the illusion of one (and I think a lot of people feel the same way, which is why Perots and Pauls keep popping up). But I still find that the D subsidiary of Republocrat Inc. is less offensive than the R one.

There are some distinctions. Although both parties get lots of corporate cash, rich people strongly supported Bush. In 2004, 3% of voters earned $200k or more. 63% of this group voted for Bush. Is the GOP the party of the rich? Sure looks like it.

while continuing to crush future generations with a pile of debt


Don't be silly. Cheney said "deficits don't matter."
8.30.2008 1:30am