People For the American Way

Foreign Funded Chamber of Commerce Pours Money into U.S. Elections


Contact: Drew Courtney or Miranda Blue at People For the American Way

Email: [email protected]

Phone Number: 202-467-4999

According to reporting released today by Think Progress, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, which is spending millions of dollars supporting the GOP in the 2010 Elections, collects hundreds of thousands of dollars from foreign owned businesses, including companies owned by foreign governments.

“It’s no surprise that foreign owned companies are interested in supporting Republicans,” said Michael B. Keegan, President of People For the American Way. “After all, Senate Republicans voted in lockstep to block legislation that would have prevented foreign corporations from using American companies as conduits for spending money in our elections. The GOP voted to keep foreign money in elections and to keep corporate money secret. Now companies owned by Abu Dhabi and Russia seem to be returning the favor.”

According to a report released last week by People For the American Way, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce has already spent over $1 million in Colorado, Florida, New Hampshire on ads in each state, along with more than $800,000 in California, $500,000 in Kentucky, $300,000 in Missouri, and $200,000 in Pennsylvania and Indiana. According to the Washington Post, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce “vows to spend $75 million or more on November’s midterm election cycle.”

“Voters from both parties are sick and tired of the influence that big money interests have in Washington,” said Keegan. “We need to pass legislation like DISCLOSE so voters can see who exactly it is that is trying to buy elections, and, ultimately, we need to pass a constitutional amendment to fix this problem once and for all. Voters should be well aware of which interests are already pulling the strings for many of the candidates who are seeking their vote.”