Where did the hundreds of millions of dollars that were used in the ubiquitous attack ads in the 201o mid-term elections come from? Who funded attack ads such as the fraudulent one that falsely accused a Congresswoman of supporting Viagra for rapists in the health care reform law? According to Bloomberg, the multi-billion, transnational corporation Merck & Co. and other pharmaceutical corporations secretly were behind that one.
Nearly two years after the elections, the truth slowly is coming out about how some of the biggest, most global corporations in the world corruptly influenced American elections after Citizens United. Bloomberg links millions of dollars of contributions and spending from global corporations through front groups such as the American Action Network and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. In addition to Merck, the corporations meddling in American elections include Chevron, Prudential Financial Inc., and Target.
Previous reports show that the global corporations such as News Corporation funneled millions of dollars into the 2010 election. As with most global corporations, News Corporation’s largest shareholders also are global corporations based around the world. For example, the second largest shareholder in News Corporation, after the Murdoch family, is Prince Alwaleed bin Talal’s Kingdom Holding Company of Saudi Arabia, holding more than $2 billion of shares. Similarly, more than half of the shareholders of the Germany-based Merck & Co. are outside the United States.
Earlier this month, the Sunlight Foundation reported on how the Citizens United decision could lead to foreign interests influencing the outcome of American elections.
It remains illegal for foreign human beings to engage in U.S. election spending. As a recent Court decision says, “it is fundamental to the definition of our national political community that foreign citizens do not have a constitutional right to participate in, and thus may be excluded from, activities of democratic self-government.”