Brands distance from Trump after D.C. riots
The list of companies that say they are withholding political contributions after last week’s U.S. Capitol riot continues to grow hourly.
The companies fall into three 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 120 Republican representatives and eight GOP senators voted to object to the electroral count, in support of President Donald Trump’s efforts to overturn the results.
This list does not include companies such as Bank of America Corp., General Motors Co. or FedEx Corp. 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.
Action Against 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 US$7,000 it donated to Hawley, of Missouri, and the US$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:
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.
DOW: The chemical company paused contributions by its political action committees 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.
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.”
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.
BEST BUY: The electronics retailer said it will halt campaign contributions to the 147 members of Congress who objected to certifying the election results.
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.
MASTERCARD: The credit card company said it will stop donating to lawmakers who opposed certification.
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.”
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, and the Airbnb PAC will update its framework and withhold support from those who voted against the certification of the presidential 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.”
Pausing All Contributions:
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.”
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.
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.
UNITED PARCEL SERVICE: The package-delivery company has suspended all contributions for now, a spokesperson said.
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.
BP: The oil giant is pausing all contributions for six months, at which time its PAC will “re-evaluate its criteria for candidate support.”
JPMORGAN CHASE: The largest U.S. bank by assets said it’s planning a six-month suspension to both Republicans and Democrats.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.”
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.
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.”
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 halting political donations, 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.
--With assistance from Kevin Crowley, Craig Giammona, Annie Massa and Todd Shields.