Poll: Majority wants corporate money out of politics

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“One key remedy — critical for shareholders whose investments allow corporations to generate massive profits — is that the SEC move forward on issuing rules to require publicly traded companies to disclose their political spending.”


Seventy-six percent of people surveyed said they would support such a disclosure requirement for corporations.

When respondents were asked whether their dissatisfaction with campaign finance transparency would ever spur them to action, 79 percent of those polled said they would refuse to buy a company’s product or services if it did not disclose its political donations. 

Many of the organizations backing the poll’s results — which include Common Cause, U.S. PIRG, Greenpeace, People for the American Way, Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington and the Main Street Alliance, among others — singled out the U.S. Chamber of Commerce as one of the biggest offenders when it comes to secret spending. 

“This poll shows that the public wants to close the backdoors to secret political spending,” said Blair Bowie with U.S. PIRG. “Americans are ready to take action to bring secret corporate spending to the light and to hold accountable those companies — and their conduits, like the U.S. Chamber of Commerce — who attempt to hide their spending.”

Under current campaign finance requirements, groups like the Chamber can accept financial contributions from businesses without having to disclose the names of those companies when the Chamber donates money to political campaigns.

About 81 percent of people surveyed said the current campaign spending rules are “bad for democracy,” according to the poll. And 74 percent of those polled said they want the name of the company and its CEO to appear in advertisements paid for by corporate political spending. 

A spokesman for the U.S. Chamber of Commerce did not immediately return a request for comment. 

The poll was conducted from Oct. 8-10 and had a margin of error of plus or minus 3.8 percent.