April 15, 2013
I am writing to urge the Securities and Exchange Commission to issue a rule requiring publicly traded corporations to publicly disclose all their political spending – and to do so this year.
“Dark money” groups that accept contributions from corporations, but are not required to publicly identify their corporate donors, spent millions of dollars during the 2012 elections. It is a scandal that money from publicly traded corporations – which belongs to investors – can be secretly spent to distort our democracy.
The Supreme Court’s ruling in Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission created the loophole that enables this secret spending, but the SEC has the authority to close it.
Government should encourage business that are publicly traded to own up to political contributions so that consumers can make a deision about supporting organizations that aret looking out for their best interest. I want to know that if I purchase a vehicle from a company they are also not lobbying for higher gas prices. When I purchase a pair of shoes from Nike I want to know that they are not pollution the planet. Socially responsible business is the solution.
Both shareholders and the public must be fully informed as to how much corporations spend on politics and which candidates are being promoted or attacked. Disclosures should be posted promptly on the SEC’s web site.
Thank you for considering my comment.