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3 years Ago
In early January, the Biden inauguration committee, which is organized as a 501(c)(4) “social welfare” nonprofit, voluntarily disclosed the names of more than two-dozen other corporations and labor unions that contributed money.
Many lobby the federal government or have government contracts. But the Biden inaugural committee did not say how much money these donors gave.
Among the corporations and unions the Biden inaugural committee listed as of January 27: Amalgamated Bank, Amazon, American Federation of Teachers, Area 1, Bravia Capital Partners, Cannae Holdings LLC, Charter Communications, Comcast, Fidelity National Financial Inc., Google, Higherschool Publishing Company, Holland & Knight, and Graff Real Estate Inc.
Also: the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers, Irwin Hodson Group, Masimo Corporation, MedPoint Management, Microsoft, Qualcomm, Starling Chevy Buick GMC of Florida, The Jernigan Law Firm, United Airlines, United Association of Plumbers & Fitters, United Food and Commercial Workers, UPS, Verizon, and Yelp Inc.
One company on that list — Holland & Knight — is a lobbying firm that last year earned nearly $28 million from its working lobbying the federal government on behalf of dozens of clients.
These clients include the American Chemistry Council, Bacardi Ltd., CrossFit Inc., the Financial Services Institute, Spirit Airlines, and Thomson Reuters, as well as the municipal governments of Atlanta, Philadelphia, Phoenix, Seattle, and West Palm Beach, Florida — next door to where former President Donald Trump now lives at his Mar-a-Lago resort.
Bank of America, Ford Motor Co., and Aflac, although not on Biden’s disclosure list, previously indicated to Insider that they would make contributions to the president’s inauguration.
During his presidential campaign, Biden took a hard line against lobbyists and offered several detailed proposals to tighten lobbying rules and increase transparency.
“As president, he’ll enact legislation to bar lobbyists from making contributions to, and fundraising or bundling for, those who they lobby,” Biden’s campaign platform stated. “This legislation will be designed to ensure that the public knows as much as possible about the political spending of those who seek to influence officeholders and other government officials. Any lobbyist contribution must be disclosed within 24-hours, and any lobbyist-hosted fundraising event must be disclosed before it occurs.”
It added: “Disclosure requirements are riddled with loopholes, so lobbyists can coordinate a PR campaign without ever disclosing their work.”
By law, the Biden inaugural committee must publicly disclose full information about its donors within 90 days after the January 20 inauguration.