As Occupy Wall Street activists camp out across America in protest of a corrupt political system and Republican Party operatives rake in hundreds of millions of dollars from anonymous donors to fund next fall’s effort to end Barack Obama’s presidency, at least one metric in the depressing world of money and politics is trending in the right direction: Giant corporations are being increasingly open about their use of shareholder money for political campaigns.
More than half of America’s 100 largest companies now publicly disclose — or even prohibit — the direct use of corporate cash to fund political activity, according to a recently released study by the Center for Political Accountability, a pro-disclosure advocacy organization. This percentage may not seem especially impressive, but it marks a striking turnaround from 2003, when the Center first started tracking corporate polices. “Voluntary disclosure of political spending is becoming a mainstream corporate practice, and a growing number of companies are putting restrictions on the political use of their money,” the study concluded.
Copyright 2011 The National Memo