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Growing Scandal Surrounds U.S. Chamber of Commerce's Electioneering

Jeremy Sprinkle
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U.S. Chamber of Commerce President Ton Donohue with George W. Bush

Chamber caught using foreign cash to buy the U.S. Congress

The so-called 'U.S.' Chamber of Commerce has been spending money it receives from foreign corporations and foreign governments to unload a torrent of partisan attack ads before the November election - over $75 million worth. The TV ads and mailers almost exclusively promote Republican candidates and attack Democrats, and the entire program is being paid out of the Chamber's general fund. ThinkProgress broke news of the scandal last week - that fund collects foreign contributions:

In recent years, the Chamber has become very aggressive with its fundraising, opening offices abroad and helping to found foreign chapters (known as Business Councils or “AmChams”). While many of these foreign operations include American businesses with interests overseas, the Chamber has also spearheaded an effort to raise money from foreign corporations, including ones controlled by foreign governments. These foreign members of the Chamber send money either directly to the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, or the foreign members fund their local Chamber, which in turn, transfers dues payments back to the Chamber’s H Street office in Washington DC. These funds are commingled to the Chamber’s 501(c)(6) account which is the vehicle for the attack ads.

Chamber's foreign members reap rewards of its outsourcing agenda

The same 'U.S.' Chamber of Commerce trying to buy the Congress this election is the one pushing an anti-American jobs agenda hell-bent on shipping your job overseas. They fought Democratic efforts in Congress to end tax breaks for companies that outsource. They fought the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act, Wall Street reform, and health insurance reform. Even as Chamber President Tom Donohue praises the "virtues of outsourcing" on talk shows, his organization is spending big to dupe voters into believing Democrats are to blame for job losses and to elect Republicans ... so they can continue their assault on American jobs. Rachel Maddow explains:

ThinkProgress details how the Chamber's electioneering benefits its foreign members who thrive off the outsourcing of our jobs:

From The Chamber’s anti-American jobs agenda serves not only the profit-seeking of right-wing corporate executives in the United States, but also works to send jobs overseas to the following outsourcing companies, who are some of the dozens of foreign corporations that pay member dues to the Chamber of Commerce’s 501c(6) account, which is used to fund its political ads:

InfoSys, Bangalore, India (at least $15,000 in annual member dues): “Infosys is the ‘Best Outsourcing Partner’ according to the Waters Rankings for the third consecutive year.”

KPIT Cummins, Pune, India ($7,500): “Strategic global networking, together with industry-proven practices & processes, give KPIT Cummins a cutting edge in the realm of outsourcing.”

Patni Americas, Mumbai, India ($15,000): “Patni, the world leader in IT outsourcing and business process outsourcing provides offshore software development, global sourcing, custom software development, and a vast array of product engineering and IT services to companies worldwide.”

NIIT Technologies, Delhi, India ($15,000): “[L]eadership in the area of outsourcing.”

QuEST Global, Singapore ($7,500): “QuEST is a leader in the engineering services outsourcing (ESO) space.”

Rolta, Mumbai, India ($7,500): “Rolta’s global footprint and track record along with its capable off-shoring model gives it a unique positioning in this large market.”

SKP Crossborder Consulting, Mumbai, India ($7,500): “SKP’s core outsourcing practice is managed out of a fully equipped, spacious premises based in Pune with access to facilities in Mumbai, Hyderabad, Delhi and Bangalore.”

Tata Group, Mumbai, India ($15,000): “[W]orld-class solutions in outsourcing – business process outsourcing, application outsourcing, infrastructure outsourcing.”

Wipro, Bangalore, India ($15,000): “India’s biggest destination for U.S. offshoring.”