Learn more about our policy experts.

Media Contacts

Angela Bradbery, Director of Communications
w. (202) 588-7741
c. (202) 503-6768
abradbery@citizen.org, Twitter

Don Owens, Deputy Director of Communications
w. (202) 588-7767
dowens@citizen.org

Karilyn Gower, Press Officer
w. (202) 588-7779
kgower@citizen.org

David Rosen, Press Officer, Regulatory Affairs
w. (202) 588-7742
drosen@citizen.org

Nicholas Florko, Communications Officer, Global Trade Watch
w. (202) 454-5108
nflorko@citizen.org

Other Important Links

Press Release Database
Citizen Vox blog
Texas Vox blog
Consumer Law and Policy blog
Energy Vox blog
Eyes on Trade blog
Facebook/publiccitizen

Follow us on Twitter

 

March 25, 2013

Public Citizen Applauds 70 Members of Congress Who Urge the SEC to Require Disclosure of Corporate Political Spending

Statement of Lisa Gilbert, Director of Public Citizen’s Congress Watch Division

Public Citizen applauds the 70 members of the U.S. House of Representatives, led by Reps. Chris Van Hollen (D-Md.) and Michael Capuano (D-Mass.), who sent a letter to the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) today urging it to follow through on its stated agenda and require disclosure of political spending by corporations.

Since the U.S. Supreme Court’s Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission decision, corporations have been able to spend money freely on elections, and often do so by giving funds to “dark money” organizations not required to disclose the identities of their donors. But investors have a right to know how their money – a corporation’s profits –– is being spent. The trouble is, there is no requirement that companies share this information.

The letter stated:

"Some companies have taken the initiative to publicly disclose their political spending which illustrates not only the ease with which it can be accomplished but also the acceptance of many prominent and large corporations. Unfortunately, however, other companies have kept their shareholders in the dark and unaware that their money could be funding political activities, or even political attack ads. The rights of shareholders must be protected."

The SEC has received a record-breaking deluge of 490,000 comments urging disclosure of political spending. In addition, a Zogby International poll commissioned by the Center for Economic Development found that 77 percent of business leaders said that corporations should disclose all of their direct and indirect political expenditures. The SEC has taken the public and investor demand for greater disclosure into account and has begun to consider a rulemaking in response.

These members of Congress have it right; the SEC can and should move this rule forward. It is critical both for democracy and the rights of the marketplace investor.

###

Copyright © 2016 Public Citizen. Some rights reserved. Non-commercial use of text and images in which Public Citizen holds the copyright is permitted, with attribution, under the terms and conditions of a Creative Commons License. This Web site is shared by Public Citizen Inc. and Public Citizen Foundation. Learn More about the distinction between these two components of Public Citizen.


Public Citizen, Inc. and Public Citizen Foundation

 

You can support the fight for greater government and corporate accountability through a donation to either Public Citizen, Inc., or Public Citizen Foundation, Inc.

Public Citizen lobbies Congress and federal agencies to advance Public Citizen’s mission of advancing government and corporate accountability. When you make a contribution to Public Citizen, you become a member of Public Citizen, showing your support and entitling you to benefits such as Public Citizen News. Contributions to Public Citizen are not tax-deductible.

Public Citizen Foundation focuses on research, public education, and litigation in support of our mission. By law, the Foundation can engage in only very limited lobbying. Contributions to Public Citizen Foundation are tax-deductible.