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As Corporations Take a Stand on the Coup, Big Oil Stays Mum

Sens. Ted Cruz (R-TX) and Josh Hawley (R-MO) stood by their Biden vote objections even after the attack on the Capitol.


(Image: Photo illustration by TYT; Getty Images photos by Sergio Flores, left, and Samuel Corum.)

Corporations are withholding political action committee (PAC) donations to members of Congress who objected to the certification of the Biden election.
But there are differing degrees of response: From halting political donations to merely reviewing policy.

Major oil companies are among those responding the least among big corporations. Only one of the top ten biggest oil companies in the world has publicly pledged to suspend all PAC donations to the members of Congress who objected to the Biden election certification.

The bottom line is that chaos is bad for business.

At least 38 major corporations have condemned the Jan. 6 attempted coup by Trump-inspired, far-right insurrectionists. Some corporations have also pledged to suspend, temporarily, donating to the 147 Republican members of congress who officially objected to the congressional certification of the election of Joe Biden as president. It’s been alleged that publicity about possible congressional objections may have emboldened the storming of the U.S. Capitol.

There are, though, different degrees of corporate response.

On Inauguration Day, Oracle, the software giant, announced that its employee PAC would, “…pause contributions to anyone who voted against certifying the November 2020 election results.” In the past, Oracle employees have petitioned Oracle’s founder, multi-billionaire Larry Ellison, to stop supporting Trump. Ellison was a big Trump supporter and donor.

Walmart told Bloomberg News it is going further, “…indefinitely suspending contributions to those members of Congress who voted against the lawful certification of state Electoral College votes.”

The giant chemical company Dow Inc. reportedly said it would suspend donations for one election cycle to any member of Congress who voted to object to the certification of Biden’s win.

Amazon, which donated over $600,000 to the 147 members of Congress who voted to overturn the election results, told Popular Information that it “has suspended contributions to any member of Congress who voted to override the results of the U.S. presidential election.”

Other major corporations promising to cease PAC donations to members of Congress who objected to the Biden victory include the insurance company Blue Cross Blue Shield; Marriott International; Commerce Bancshares, the parent company of Commerce Bank; and multi-million-dollar donor AT&T.

And then there is the oil industry.

ExxonMobil, ranked in 2020 the sixth largest oil company in the world, promised only to “review” its giving. Popular Information reports that ExxonMobil’s PAC was the second-largest contributor to the eight senators who objected to Biden’s certification. The company’s PAC reportedly donated a total of $38,625 to five senators — $10,625 to Cindy Hyde-Smith (R-MI), $10,000 to Roger Marshall (R-KS), $10,000 to Cynthia Lummis (R-WY), $3,000 to John Kennedy (R-LA), and $5,000 to Tommy Tuberville (R-AL).

Royal Dutch Shell, the fourth largest oil company in the world, did not respond to TYT's questions about what actions, if any, it is taking regarding the Republicans who objected to the Biden win.

British Petroleum is the fifth largest oil company in the world. On Twitter BP welcomed the Biden-Harris administration, but made no mention of the Jan. 6 insurrection. BP did announce its employee PAC would suspend all political donations, not just to Republican objectors, for six months.

Chevron, the eighth largest oil company in the world, publicly called for a peaceful transition of power in the U.S., but did not offer any actions regarding its political donations other than merely reviewing them.

Asked what it would do regarding political donations to the 147 members of Congress who objected to the Biden cerfication, Valero, a top 10 U.S. oil company, did not respond.

According to the Center for Responsive Politics, ConocoPhillips said it would temporarily suspend all PAC contributions for six months. The Center reports that ConocoPhillips donated $1 million to the Senate Leadership Fund and $250,000 to the Congressional Leadership Fund, two top Republican PACs.

The one big oil exception is Marathon Oil, which suspended all PAC donations to the members of Congress who had objected to the Biden election certification. Marathon reportedly had donated $1 million to the Congressional Leadership Fund and $500,000 to the Senate Leadership Fund.

TYT Investigative Reporter Ti-Hua Chang is an award-winning journalist who has worked for CBS News and other outlets. You can find him on Twitter @TiHuaChang.

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