Washington, D.C. — In reflection of the year that followed the deadly coup attempt at the U.S. Capitol on January 6th, 2021, government watchdog Accountable.US released an interactive report called ‘In Bad Company’ that spotlights the hypocritical and complicit post-insurrection behavior of twenty Fortune 500 companies and 10 leading industry groups. The report found many of these organizations sought praise for condemning the insurrection or made flowery statements in support of democracy in the aftermath — and then chose to abandon those stated values within months in pursuit of more political influence. One by one, the organizations gave tens of thousands of dollars to Members of Congress that voted to reject the 2020 election results in service of the Big Lie, including companies that pledged to cease contributions to these 147 lawmakers that have been dubbed the ‘Sedition Caucus’. Profiled companies include: Boeing, UPS, FedEx, Cigna, Pfizer, and Johnson & Johnson. *Click HERE to read ‘In Bad Company’
Major corporations were quick to condemn the insurrection and tout their support for democracy — and almost as quickly, many ditched those purported values by cutting big checks to the very politicians that helped instigate the failed coup attempt. The increasing volume of corporate donations to lawmakers who tried to overthrow the will of the people makes clear that these companies were never committed to standing up for democracy in the first place. Even as democracy continues to be in the crosshairs of powerful purveyors of the Big Lie, these CEOs would rather amass political influence than stand up for their customers, shareholders, and employees.”
Accountable.US president Kyle Herrig
AT ISSUE: CEOs were quick to forgive and forget the election objectors’ rhetoric and actions that were a major escalation factor in the lead up to the assault on democracy. The question is, did these companies honestly care about preserving our democracy in the first place? Key Findings from ‘In Bad Company’’ :
- Cash Flow: The 30 companies and trade groups profiled in the report contributed over $3.3 million to the Sedition Caucus since the January 6th insurrection.
- What Pause?: After the insurrection, major corporate donations subsided for a single quarter but reached nearly $3 million in Q2 and Q3 respectively; given October’s total, Q4 is on pace to be the largest quarter of the year.
- Corporate Complicity: At least 85 percent of the corporations that we profiled—17 of the 20—are major contributors to the Sedition Caucus and either pledged to or publicly considered pausing or reviewing their political spending after the January 6 insurrection.
- Purported Values: At least 60 percent of the trade groups that we profiled —6 of the 10—have stated values on furthering diversity initiatives despite their political donations to the Sedition Caucus.
- Enemies Foreign but not Domestic: 100 percent of the defense contractors profiled—6 of the 6—claim to help protect the nation and people around the world, despite that they are major contributors to the members of Congress who voted to object to the 2020 electoral college vote, which helped incite the attack on the Capitol.
- Ties to Trump: At least 53 percent of the companies and trade associations profiled—16 of the 30—have connections to the conservative establishment or former President Trump.
In addition, Accountable.US released an updated analysis finding Fortune 500 company PACs and corporate trade groups in general have now donated more than $8.1 million to the Sedition Caucus from January 2021 through November 2021 – including $1.2 million in November alone. In August, the watchdog launched a searchable tracker that allows the public to search contributions in this universe of donors, which was used to compile data for ‘In Bad Company’.
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