Contributions to Democrats Increase
Some large U.S. companies -- such as insurers and pharmaceutical companies -- have increased their campaign contributions to Democrats this year, possibly an indication that they are "starting to hedge their political bets after a decade of supporting congressional Republicans," the Wall Street Journal reports. Political action committees administered by U.S. companies will contribute an estimated $120 million to congressional candidates for the 2006 election cycle, an increase from $91.6 million for the 2002 election cycle.
This year, Wyeth, FedEx, Verizon and Intel have donated the largest proportion of their campaign contributions to Democrats since 1994, when each donated more than half of their contribution to Democrats. Wyeth has donated 33.7% of company campaign contributions to Democrats for the 2006 election cycle, compared with 26.9% for the 2004 election cycle.
A Wyeth spokesperson said the political parties of candidates do not "necessarily come into play" when the company makes decisions on campaign contributions.
Meanwhile, MetLife has donated "a slim majority" of company campaign contributions to Democrats this year, and AIG has donated 57% of contributions to Democrats, the Journal reports (Mullins, Wall Street Journal, 6/19).