Skip to comments.Political ads are tough sell for image-conscious corporations
Posted on 06/01/2010 11:07:40 AM PDT by jazusamo
All over the country, corporate CEOs and trade groups are asking their lawyers the same question: How can we get our companies involved in this political election season without leaving tracks?
After a landmark Supreme Court ruling this year freed executives to spend unlimited corporate cash on campaigns, some predicted that businesses would flood television airwaves with pro-industry political ads -- but that just hasn't happened yet. Image-sensitive corporations are still trying to make sure that, if they jump into 2010 politicking, they do so as anonymously as possible, according to Republican political operatives and trade group leaders.
Many corporate executives don't want to wade into partisan political campaigns. But other companies have told their advisers and GOP fundraisers that they are interested in helping finance ads to spotlight proposed regulations and lawmakers they don't like. These companies include firms on Wall Street and in the energy sector opposed to stricter regulations as well as fast-food franchise owners fearful of being forced to unionize their shops.
They just don't want to be singled out -- or have their corporate logo attached.
Some fear the rules on corporate election activities could change, leaving their company exposed; a White House-supported bill likely to be voted on by the House after the Memorial Day recess would require calling out by name the corporations that fund campaign ads. Republicans, who generally rely more heavily on donations from big-business executives, say that Democrats are trying to silence the political speech of corporations with the bill.
(Excerpt) Read more at washingtonpost.com ...
I didn’t find this particularly forthright. Sample: states that the GOP “generally” counts on support from big corporations. As we’ve seen, Obama and the Democrats outdo the GOP on corporate donations.
The unstated obvious: corporations will behave in a manner that maximizes their and their shareholders’ bottom line. They will not gamble by advocating controversial issues; they will deliberately enter the political fray and state their case (at least the successful ones will) transparently.
A simple ad featuring a CEO and many company employees stating “We oppose Bill X, because its passage will result in our raising prices on you, and the elimination of good jobs for us. Let us show you why..” could be very effective.
Before the recent SCOTUS ruling, the system required a corporation to advocate opaquely, exacerbating the appearance of impropriety. Transparency is key; I would support requiring clear identification of an advertisment’s funding source (but would not require some stupid ending with the CEO saying “I support this message” crap).
Well said, I agree.
The dems are almost exclusively the recipients of union funds and I don't hear any proposals that the national union prez of which ever union involved make a similar statement.
not exactly showing the sort of fortitude that led our Founding Fathers to risk “our lives, our fortunes and our sacred honor”, eh?
You’re correct...If a Corp chooses to support a genuine cause they should be proud to attach their name to it.
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