I wonder if AT&T spent just a little bit more money improving its cell-phone coverage and less money trying to influence politicians, if I might actually be able to use my iPhone inside my house? Since 1989, AT&T has contributed $45.6 million to candidates running for office, which puts the communications giant at the top of the 10 Biggest Corporate Campaign Contributors in U.S. Politics from 1989 to 2010. Bruce Watson at AOL’s Daily Finance put together the list of big givers, which includes a couple corporations you might expect, such as Goldman Sachs and Citigroup, and a couple you might not, such as UPS and Microsoft. Watson also identifies some of the members of Congress who benefited most from the contributions:
It isn’t hard to see why the phone company is willing to open its wallet for Congress. After its early-1980s antitrust breakup, Ma Bell has spent the last few decades putting itself back together again. Today, it’s the largest land-based phone carrier, the largest cellular carrier and the 13th-largest company in the U.S. In 2006, as AT&T’s political giving reached its apex, the company bought Bell South, a major piece of the post-breakup puzzle. Coincidence?
See the complete list here.