Many of Largest U.S. Corporations Paid More for Lobbying than for Federal Income Taxes

Friday, January 27, 2012
GE CEO Jeffrey Immelt and Barack Obama (AP Photo)
The federal government is responsible for hundreds of millions of dollars being spent each year by the largest American corporations. But it’s not tax dollars they’re spending. Rather, this sum represents the amount big business is allocating on lobbying lawmakers and federal officials, in part so the companies wind up paying considerably less on income taxes than they do on influencing public policy.
According to a new report from the nonprofit Public Campaign, 30 of the biggest corporations spent more lobbying Congress than paying taxes from 2008 to 2010. These businesses made combined profits of $164 billion during the period analyzed. But they ended up enjoying tax rebates that collectively totaled nearly $11 billion.
Meanwhile, the 30 companies spent $476 million on lobbying and contributed more than $22 million to federal election campaigns.
The corporations included General Electric, PG&E, Verizon, Wells Fargo, Boeing, DuPont, Mattel, Corning and FedEx. General Electric made $10.5 billion in U.S. profits and spent more than $84 million on lobbying, but paid no federal income taxes.
-Noel Brinkerhoff
For Hire: Lobbyists or the 99%? (Public Campaign of, by, and for the People) (pdf)
General Electric Doesn’t Pay Taxes; Why Should You? (by Noel Brinkerhoff and David Wallechinsky, AllGov)

Corporations Have Easy Time Beating Tax Code (by Noel Brinkerhoff, AllGov) 


Scarlet Pimpernel 6 years ago
the companies' other benefits come in a myriad of ways, not always beneficial to the public. ge benefits from the upcoming incandescent light ban; compact fluorescent lights, incandescents' main replacement, while touted as "green," require much more resources to make (in china btw) and are dangerous. monsanto and conagra are behind, and profit greatly from, the upcoming mandate (which until now has only been tax breaks for compliant filling stations) to add ethanol to automotive gasoline, which is bad for cars. not to mention that ethanol manufacture drives up the price of corn, a staple for poor people throughout the hemisphere.
WayneLLewis 6 years ago
that is because they get a better return on their investment paying protection money to the government (i.e. mafia) than they do from their taxes.
Leonard Robinson 6 years ago
maybe we need to make the upper limit of lobbying funds to be equal to corporations (and individuals)what their income tax bill is.

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