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EMF Studies

09 March 2018

United States: Congress Took $101 Million in Donations from the Telecommunications Industry

More than 100 million dollars in contributions from mobile phone manufacturers went to U.S. election campaigns between 1989 and 2017. The article shows the amounts contributed per candidate in the U.S. Congress.  Be sure to look at the charts and tables.  Which campaign received the most money? - that of Senator John McCain:
$2,554,784.


CONGRESS TOOK $101 MILLION IN DONATIONS FROM THE ISP INDUSTRY — HERE’S HOW MUCH YOUR LAWMAKER GOT

Comcast, Verizon, AT&T, and others spread their money far and wide to influence your government

The FCC is about to give massive internet service providers the power to divide the internet. It is at risk of becoming unrecognizable. A vital global utility that has been a boon to creative and economic freedom for people around the world may be turned into a twisted land of tolls and corporate control.

The stakes are high. The internet now touches every town, every city, and every single one of us — whether we use it or not. Those who control the network control the future.

The FCC is the current venue for this fight, but Congress will eventually intervene. As telecom expert Susan Crawford argues, the FCC is “being outrageous” to force Congress’ involvement. And both net neutrality advocates and the telecom industry have asked for lawmakers to act. Advocates believe a law will make net neutrality more durable. But ISPs are betting they’ll be able to write the bill — because they’ve paid for the opportunity.

In March, we published a story that showed contributions from the ISP industry to members of Congress who voted to repeal a landmark FCC privacy rule, opening the door to the sale of customer data. It was one of our most popular stories of the year, and many of you asked why we only published contributions to some members of Congress. Incidentally, every one of the 265 members who voted for the measure in March were Republicans. And many of those same members endorse the effort to end net neutrality.

But it’s fair to want to see monetary influence across all of Congress. While it is clear that alignment with the ISPs is currently drawn along party lines, the industry’s attempt to gain favor with lawmakers is not partisan. Entrenched telecommunications companies liberally spread money and attention to everyone who holds office. Sometimes that influence comes in the form of lavish parties with Olympic athletes and lobbyists, but consistently it comes in the form of contributions to campaigns.

It’s impossible to quantify the overall influence of this powerful industry, but we can chart some of it. Below you will find contributions to individual members of Congress, and those members’ leadership PACs, from 1989 to the present day. This money came from the telecommunication industry’s own PACs, their individual members or employees or owners, and those individuals’ immediate families. This data was prepared for The Verge by The Center for Responsive Politics: an independent, non-partisan nonprofit research group that tracks money in US politics and its effect on elections and public policy.

https://www.theverge.com/2017/12/11/16746230/net-neutrality-fcc-isp-congress-campaign-contribution

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