Report: Wall Street Quietly Considering Reopening Wallets for Politicians

2006 Stock photo of stock exchange. (Mario Tama/Getty Images)
Mario Tama/Getty Images

Wall Street firms are apparently looking to resume political donations in the coming months, according to a report from Bloomberg.

Wall Street firms paused their donations after the wake of the Capitol Hill riot in early January.

At the time, Breitbart News reported how some of the largest banks and companies were putting a freeze on contributions:

J.P. Morgan Chase, the nation’s biggest bank by assets and market capitalization, said it is halting donations through its PAC for six months. Citigroup, the third-largest U.S. bank by assets, is reportedly pressing pause on political donations for the first quarter of 2020.

Goldman Sachs put the kibosh on donations pending a review of “how people acted during this period,” according to the New York Times, with the likely result that it will exclude Republican politicians who challenged the 2020 election results. Morgan Stanley also said it is stopping political contributions. It is considering withdrawing support for any politicians who voted against certifying Joe Biden’s electoral college win.

Corporate America is also freezing donations. So far, Marriott, Blue Cross Blue Shield, and Boston Scientific have said they will close their political purse strings.

A political lawyer at Arent Fox law firm, Craig Engle, told Bloomberg he expects to see the PAC donations resume early next month. But the donations to some of the 147 members who voted against the election results “is truly a case-by-case, corporation-by-corporation or group-by-group decision,” with no blanket rule.

Some members who objected to the election, “will remain on what’s been dubbed the ‘no-fly list,’ a likely permanent ban on corporate PAC donations, like Missouri Senator Josh Hawley or Representative Marjorie Taylor Greene of Georgia.”

The Wall Street “money machine… contributed $787 million to the 2020 election,” as reported by Bloomberg. The ban on contributions was a publicity stunt, “it was about publicly showing customers and stockholders that they were disgusted with the armed insurrection and the Republicans who directly or indirectly backed the effort,” said Bloomberg.

Sam Geduldig, a former lobbyist for Goldman Sachs, said the move was a “huge miscalculation,” mentioning “Republicans are becoming more populist and anti-big bank,” he pointed out, adding many Democrats are starting to align with Republicans on the same issues.

The executive director for the Center for Responsive Politics, Sheila Krumholz, told Bloomberg, “If companies so quickly and easily backtrack on the PAC suspension, it will prove to be a P.R. move.”

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