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Politics McConnell Now Decries Corporate Politicking He Once Championed

23:25  06 april  2021
23:25  06 april  2021 Source:   bloomberg.com

Senate GOP leader Mitch McConnell rejects claims he will be retire

  Senate GOP leader Mitch McConnell rejects claims he will be retire Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell said he doesn't think there will be a vacancy for his seat and said he 'isn't going anywhere,' after backing a law to keep his seat in Republican hands.'I don't think we're going to have a vacancy. I'm not going anywhere,' McConnell said Tuesday.

(Bloomberg) -- Mitch McConnell is telling U.S. chief executives to stay out of politics in response to the corporate backlash against a new GOP Georgia voting law -- a shift for the Senate Republican leader who has long encouraged corporate political activity in the form of donations.

Mitch McConnell wearing a suit and tie © Bloomberg Mitch McConnell

McConnell joined other Republicans this week in criticizing corporations, including two Georgia-based companies, Delta Air Lines Inc. and the Coca-Cola Co., for objecting to the state’s new election law that Democrats say restricts voting. He and Republicans also have criticized Major League Baseball for moving its All-Star Game from Georgia to Colorado in response to the law’s passage.

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“My advice to the corporate CEOs of America is to stay out of politics,” McConnell said at a news conference on Monday. “Don’t pick sides in these big fights.”

But he added, “I’m not talking about political contributions.”

Speaking at another press conference in Kentucky Tuesday, McConnell said it was “quite stupid” for corporations to “jump in the middle of a highly controversial issue.”

But he made a distinction between public statements and political giving. He said he objects to companies “taking a position on a highly incendiary issue like that and punishing a community or a state because you don’t like a particular law they passed.”

However, backing candidates with contributions means supporting their positions on issues, and McConnell has long championed the right of corporations to make unlimited donations to candidates. In 2002, he was the lead plaintiff in McConnell vs. FEC, a lawsuit challenging provisions of a campaign finance law known as McCain-Feingold, including its ban of so-called soft money.

Mitch McConnell told CEOs to 'stay out of politics' over the Georgia voting law, despite being one of the biggest recipients of corporate cash in Congress

  Mitch McConnell told CEOs to 'stay out of politics' over the Georgia voting law, despite being one of the biggest recipients of corporate cash in Congress McConnell lashed out at companies behaving like a "woke parallel government" by decrying Georgia's voting laws - but is a top recipient of CEOs' cash.Despite this, McConnell is a regular recipient of corporate donations, and by some measures outstrips any other member of Congress.

Before that law was enacted, political committees like the Republican National Committee and the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee could take donations in unlimited amounts from corporations.

While parties couldn’t use the money to tell voters to elect or defeat a specific candidate, they were allowed to spend it on issue ads critical of an candidate’s record or policies and other activities. Between 1991 and 2002, the parties raised more than $1 billion in soft money from organizations, including corporations, according to the Center for Responsive Politics. The Supreme Court upheld the ban in 2003.

Corporate Donations

McConnell himself received over $4 million in individual contributions from corporate CEOs during his recent re-election campaigns, according to the Center for Responsive Politics. A super-PAC closely aligned with him, the Senate Leadership Fund, raised more than $36 million from corporate treasuries in the 2020 election cycle, Federal Election Commission filings show.

Mitch McConnell and the Agony of the Post-Trump Corporate Republican

  Mitch McConnell and the Agony of the Post-Trump Corporate Republican They expected to be off moral probation after Trump. Then came Georgia.Whatever might be said about McConnell, here was an issue where not even his bitterest critics doubted his sincerity. Opposing campaign-finance reform as a dangerous restriction on political speech by businesses was the cause of his life. Obama’s memoir casually describes McConnell as lacking “any strong convictions beyond an almost religious opposition to any version of campaign-finance reform.

“It is a totally mixed message and completely disingenuous for him to now deride corporate political involvement,” said Sheila Krumholz, executive director of the Center for Responsive Politics, a group that studies campaign finance.

McConnell’s office declined to comment further on the senator’s remarks.

Georgia Republicans drew significant backlash when they enacted a law last month after former President Donald Trump and his allies falsely claimed that rampant fraud allowed President Joe Biden to carry the state last year. Democrats also accuse Republicans of seeking to depress turnout after Democrats Raphael Warnock and Jon Ossoff won Georgia’s two Senate seats in January, giving their party control of the chamber.

The new Georgia law increases voter ID requirements, and lets any Georgian challenge the voting eligibility of an unlimited number of voters, among other provisions. The law also gives the GOP-controlled legislature control over the state elections board and gives that board the ability to replace local officials in what had been bipartisan election offices.

Mitch McConnell stands by criticism of companies and accuses Democrats of misrepresenting restrictive voting laws

  Mitch McConnell stands by criticism of companies and accuses Democrats of misrepresenting restrictive voting laws Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell said Wednesday that the complaints he had leveled a day earlier at corporations for publicly protesting a new Georgia voting law were not said "very artfully" even as he stood by his criticism of the CEOs who he charged "ought to read the damn bill."McConnell also defended changes being made to voting laws by several states and insisted "there is nothing remotely involved in suppressing the vote by the adjustments the Georgia law made.

Democrats say the law will restrict voting access, especially among minorities, and the law’s supporters say corporations are responding to misinformation fed by Democrats.

‘Corporations are People, Too’

Republicans argued in favor of Citizens United, a 2010 Supreme Court ruling that independent spending on elections by corporations was protected by the First Amendment, opening the door to unlimited spending by super PACs. Then-GOP presidential nominee Mitt Romney famously said, “Corporations are people, too.”

But McConnell said companies were now “dabbling in behaving like a woke parallel government.” He warned that corporations “will invite serious consequences if they become a vehicle for far-left mobs to hijack our country from outside the constitutional order.”

On campaign finance issues, McConnell has long been the point man for Republicans. In 1991, he discussed on C-Span his opposition to a bill that would have allowed for voluntary caps on spending by Senate campaigns in exchange for federal subsidies for ad buys and mailings. He said such proposals always have a partisan intent.

”It’s axiomatic that he who can write the rules of the game can win the game,” he said. “The temptation on this issue for both sides is to try to craft a set of rules that allows them to win more often.”

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Corporate America is still dangerously delusional about what the GOP has become .
The party of big business has taken to policing corporate America's speech now, and that's not going to change anytime soon.Boehner was perhaps the last leader of a now-dead Republican party we used to know. The one that was born during the Reagan years. The GOP that kept its hands out of the affairs of private enterprise, that championed free speech, that knew how to cut a deal, that you might want to have a glass of Merlot and a cigar with - that GOP's gone.

usr: 1
This is interesting!