Four banks, two large corporations, a conservative political action committee (PAC), and a law firm serving corporate, industrial, and financial institutions dominate the list of top 10 campaign donors that contributed to members of the bipartisan congressional “Super Committee,” setting the stage for a historic revenue showdown.
These entities contributed a total of $4.5 million, or 79 percent of total contributions on the top 10 list, to members of the newly formed group of six Democrats and six Republicans, according to a study by MapLight.org.
Created as part of the debt ceiling deal, the committee is charged with finding $1.5 trillion in cuts to the federal budget deficit by Thanksgiving. This group will have unprecedented power in determining where the cuts will come from, whether through new revenue or cuts to federal programs upon which millions of low- and middle-income people heavily rely.
The stage has been set for one of the most important showdowns on economic equality in recent history. At stake is not just the future of Medicare, Medicaid, and Social Security, but whether corporations and the wealthy will be made to contribute to our wellbeing as a society.
The four banks — Goldman Sachs, Citigroup, JPMorgan Chase, and Bank of America — on the list of top 10 organizations that have contributed to Super Committee members gave nearly $2 million, while the two corporations — Microsoft and General Electric — donated a total of $1.2 million. Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom, which Forbes magazine has called “Wall Street’s most powerful law firm,” contributed nearly $350,000.
Topping the list, which includes donations given by PACs, members, and employees, is the Club for Growth, a conservative PAC that has given more than $1 million to some of the committee’s Republicans. Committee member Sen. Pat Toomey (R-Pa.) is a former Club for Growth president.
Banks and other corporations significantly benefit from tax breaks, and, chances are, they will see to it that their interests are served — hands off their profits. One recent study found that, for 25 large corporations, CEO salaries were higher than what the entire company paid in federal income taxes.
In a time when corporations are rewarding executives who avoid taxes, the right thing would be to make them pay their fair share — not to elected officials, but to the revenue base that sustains public investments in health, education, and our overall wellbeing. Our lives depend on electeds choosing people over corporations.
Top 10 Organization Contributors (PACs, Employees, and Members) to Super Committee Members
|Organizations||Totals||% of Total|
|Club for Growth||$1,008,884||18%|
|University of California||$629,495||11%|
|JPMorgan Chase & Co.||$494,316||9%|
|Bank of America||$349,566||6%|
|Skadden, Arps, et al.||$347,356||6%|
Members of Congress Appointed to Super Committee
Co-Chair: Rep. Jeb Hensarling (R-Texas)
Co-Chair: Sen. Patty Murray (D-Wash.)
Sen. Max Baucus (D-Mont.)
Sen. John Kerry (D-Mass.)
Sen. Jon Kyl (R-Ariz.)
Sen. Rob Portman (R-Ohio)
Sen. Pat Toomey (R-Pa.)
Rep. Xavier Becerra (D-Calif.)
Rep. Dave Camp (R-Mich.)
Rep. Jim Clyburn (D-S.C.)
Rep. Fred Upton (R-Mich.)
Rep. Chris Van Hollen (D-Md.)