During the 2008 presidential election, employees of AT&T Inc. and the company's political-action committee spread their donations pretty evenly between Democrats and Republicans.
This election, they have given twice as much to Republicans as to Democrats. The PAC, which had donated the maximum amount allowed to Democratic Sen. Claire McCaskill of Missouri, more recently donated $5,000 to Rep. Todd Akin, one of the Republicans seeking to defeat Sen. McCaskill, according to The Wall Street Journal.
Companies are taking a clear stand ahead of the November ballot. So far, Republicans have received 56% of the donations made by company PACs and employees, according to the nonpartisan Center for Responsive Politics. It is a turnaround from the 2008 election, when corporate PACs and employees gave 55% of their donations to Democratic candidates. That's when President Barack Obama was elected and Democrats controlled both chambers of Congress. In between, during the 2010 midterms, companies split their donations more or less evenly.
The shift implies a financial swing to the GOP of as much as $300 million, and suggests that corporations are betting Republicans will win seats in the Senate and hold on to the House—although employers might not tell their employees outright where to donate.
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