How Apple’s Tim Cook and other American top CEOs are spending their own money on the midterm elections

“Company executives often steer clear of any appearance of partisanship, in large part because they don’t want to alienate customers and investors who back the other side,” Victor Reklaitis and Katie Marriner report for MarketWatch. “About 100 CEOs whose companies are components of the S&P 500 have been willing to fly a markedly Democratic or Republican flag in their political giving as individuals during the current election cycle, however.”

“MarketWatch gathered data on political contributions by those chief executives between Jan. 1, 2017, and Aug. 31, 2018, and has compiled a searchable database that shows the total money spent and the partisan breakdown, listing every contribution made by a CEO and reported to the Federal Election Commission,” Reklaitis and Marriner report. “Anyone who held the CEO job at any S&P 500 component company in the 2017-18 period is included.”

“We then screened the data looking for outliers — what we’ve called ‘partisan spenders,'” Reklaitis and Marriner report. “To be sure, plenty of CEOs contributed to nonpartisan groups — No. 1 on the list being Inc. boss Jeff Bezos, due to his $10 million donation to With Honor Fund, a nonpartisan group that aims to help military veterans get elected to Congress.”

“Yet MarketWatch’s analysis found that among the CEOs who did contribute to party-affiliated committees, nearly all of leaned heavily blue or red, with few donating equally to the two main parties,” Reklaitis and Marriner report. “The chief executives contributed a total of $7.4 million to Republican groups, almost triple the $2.6 million contributed to Democratic committees… Facebook Inc.’s Mark Zuckerberg, Apple Inc.’s Tim Cook and Google parent Alphabet Inc.’s Larry Page have reported donations of $10,000 or less… Tim Cook [contributed] $5,400. All of that to Zo Lofgren, the incumbent Democrat in San Jose, Califorinia’s congressional district.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take:

Some people have said that I shouldn’t get involved politically because probably half our customers are Republicans… so I’m going to just stay away from all that political stuff.Apple CEO Steve Jobs, August 25, 2004

Harris Poll: Corporate reputations can become politically polarized – February 9, 2017
Silicon Valley donated 60 times more to Clinton than to Trump – November 7, 2016
99% of Silicon Valley’s political dollars are going to Hillary Clinton – October 25, 2016
Apple’s politics may be hurting its brand – June 29, 2016
Apple refuses to aid 2016 GOP presidential convention over Trump comments – June 18, 2016
Apple and Silicon Valley employees love Bernie Sanders. Donald Trump? Not so much – May 6, 2016
Apple among top employers of Bernie Sanders donors – April 20, 2016
Apple employees donate $15 to Obama for every $1 to Romney – July 27, 2012
Apple, other tech firm employees’ contributions favor Democrats over Republicans, Obama over Clinton – April 14, 2008
Apple CEO Steve Jobs: ‘I’m going to just stay away from all that political stuff’ – August 25, 2004


    1. True. Not that big a deal. Especially not when you have the kind of resources Tim has.

      Jeff Bezos has spent $10 million with something called the “With Honor Fund” that seems to split spending equally down partisan sides.

      Michael Bloomberg, on the other hand, has re-registered as a Democrat and freely admits he will be spending 80 million dollars on midterm elections.

      So far George Soros has spent 13 million.
      Thomas Steyer has spent 41.5 million.

      When you see all these people spending this kind of money, it just pisses ya off. What good is my stupid letter on behalf of The Secure Data Act to my congress people who vote against everything else I believe in? It’s a few million short.

      1. Or the Adelsons, who have donated upwards of 55 million? Does that piss you off as well? Or Richard Uihlein (29 million), or Tim Mellon (10 million)? Or is it only when Democrats do it that does it “piss ya off”?

        1. Mostly its Democrats. Rich, white, racist to the bone Democrats running around calling people racist and claiming to be the party of the people. You can smell the hypocrisy there. It’s palpable. Not thrilled with rich Republicans either, but they don’t tend to try and hide it.

          1. Wot?
            You despise rich democrat donors because you believe they are racist by deceit but…respect republicans who are actually racist to your face! because they can and couldn’t care less about you??
            Why folk obtusely bend themselves out of shape to deliberately tip their forelock to the sheer arrogance of political manipulation is beyond me.
            It’s partisan poop.

    2. Well that depends on how much they give the other team.

      That said, good to read the Republican team is getting the lion share of money after the remarkable economic success the last two years.

      As Botty was fond of saying, “they woke”…

      1. Botty was a fool.

        Considering that the top 1% wealthy have skimmed off 70%+ of the wealth for themselves, mostly via a good old boy network of corporate compensation committees that scratch each others’ backs, it is VERY unlikely that the man who donates significant money to political causes is looking out for the working class (his “cost base”) or the small business owner (his competition). The oligarch is a master of money laundering, funding anonymous PACs and misinformation campaigns not unlike Cambridge Analytics, which we all know has nothing to do with Analytics whatsoever. Anyone with a brain knows that the vast majority of feckless liberal left activists can’t fund these multinational corruption machines. They aren’t greedy enough. It takes multinational organizations, modeled after the corporations that feed them, to mislead the voters with such paranoia inducing propaganda that the self-proclaimed libertarians don’t even realize what they are consuming.

        The democracy will continue to erode as long as money is used as speech. Citizens United was the last step in dismantling honest representation in the US. Now only the moneyed interests are represented. Corporations and their billionaire executives own Congress and now the greediest factions of them have set up a one-party rule (like China!) to ensure that nothing will counterbalance their unbridled greed. The current electoral system, gerrymandered and funded by elites, is 100% against the vision of the founding fathers.

          1. Goeb,

            It is predictable that you sling the attacks but never post facts or data to substantiate your extremely selfish opinions. The extreme right is characterized by unfettered greed and demand that everyone step aside to that the greediest most ruthless and powerful people can charge ahead to maximize their wealth in the short term at the expense of everyone else.

            I am, and always have been, an independent moderate. I have NEVER flown a party banner. I advocate for equal opportunity and equal justice under comprehensive fair laws worldwide. This is is direct opposition to those go-getters that hide cash overseas such as, ahem, Apple, and just about every US corporation. US corporations are NOT democratic. They are medieval fiefdoms and today, rather than serving the national interest, have corrupted our representative governments such that the taxpayers hold the bag.

            Read this:


            This is exactly the problem that is tearing apart what used to be a fairly good representative democracy. As you and your selfish party continues to push hard for oligopoly and corporatocracy, at the expense of the individual citizens, the future of the USA with not be “great”, however your president actually measures that. It will be divided, and it will be indebted, and the great weath and easy living that you have taken for granted can easily be moved somewhere else by the corporate elites that now hold all power.

            You go out of your way to denigrate half of your nation with partisan poison. That is an obvious symtom of a losing team. No team sport, including economic sports, is won when half the team is told their ideas aren’t important, their health doesn’t matter, and they are dead weight to be ignored.

            Myself and Realist and others have posted solid data showing what threats to future American prosperity exist in the Trump administration’s highly partisan, arrogant, self serving, and short-sighted views. The economic crash will come sooner rather than later. It would be wise for you to learn to work with your neighbor rather than continue to insult them at every turn. The day may come when your neighbor is all you have left.

  1. As long as more than 50% of the voting population stays informed and votes, well be alright. It hasn’t happened yet, but. That’s why today we have the racist Tea Party, do nothing congress, racist & sexist Trump and a second sexual predator on the supreme court, Kavanaugh.

      1. Of course the Tea Party isn’t officially racist. They are just greedy, and looking out for their personal wealth aggrandizement. It is just a coincidence that centuries of sexism and slavery, then institutional racism continuing to this day with disadvantaged educational and job opportunities have established a frustrating tiered society where people with darker pigment or vaginas are rewarded less than their mainstream white male counterparts.

        Fighting for the status quo, these Tea Party members think they are defending tradition when in fact they are perpetuating the hatred and, yes, racism.

          1. And what does slavery have to do with the current Republican party or this discussion, D?

            While you think that the Republican label entitles the current self-serving elephants to claim moral superiority because Lincoln also had an R next to his name, the decades that have passed since honorable men like Lincoln, Roosevelt, and Eisenhower led the nation have allowed the partisan rot to set in. Characters like Tricky Dick Nixon, Joe McCarthy, Little Arbusto Bush, and chronic liar Donny Trump are all notable scalawags that heap dishonor on the nation.

            History lesson for you:

            Lincoln signed the emancipation proclamation during the Civil War with the infamous quote, “If I could save the Union without freeing any slave I would do it, and if I could save it by freeing all the slaves I would do it; and if I could save it by freeing some and leaving others alone I would also do that.” The Emancipation Proclamation was a military policy that was intended to settle the question of what to do with the slaves that fled southern plantations during the war. The Union army thus gained approximately 200,000 new recruits.

            Lincoln may have personally felt slavery was morally wrong, but being a lawyer, he enforced the constitution and did not advocate an amendment to the constitution as the abolistionts of the day did support. He likely would have never been elected president had he explicitly called for abolishment of slavery. In the 4th presidential debate (September 18, 1858), Lincoln explicity admitted that he didn’t believe blacks were socially equal. “I will say then that I am not, nor ever have been, in favor of bringing about in any way the social and political equality of the white and black races,” he began, going on to say that he opposed blacks having the right to vote, to serve on juries, to hold office and to intermarry with whites. What he did believe was that, like all men, blacks had the right to improve their condition in society and to enjoy the fruits of their labor. In this way they were equal to white men, and for this reason slavery was inherently unjust. Both Democratic and Republican politicians to this day have maintained status quo policies that include subtle or explicit racial bias. As a white Republican, of course you don’t care about such matters. If you cared about the literal meaning of the Constiution and its long-belated 13th amendment, maybe you’d take a more circumspect and less partisan view of these deep historic issues.

          2. Yes, and add the Republicans if I remember correctly, pushed the Civil Rights bill in the 1960s over the finish line because most southern Democrats were racists (Mississippi Burning) and some were members of the KKK like Robert Byrd.

            That and Lincoln facts does not sway the CNN and Democratic Party massive brainwashing we have today. When you forget history and context only parroting present day party talking points on late night comedy shows, quite obvious, not only they cannot think for themselves, worse they are unable to be honest and objective to reality.

            Decided I no longer waste my time getting into a lengthy point by point debate with dishonest partisans that are incapable of WEIGHING both sides fairly. Had my fill of that…

          1. LOLOLOL is such a compelling argument.

            If this is the mental capacity of the current Republican party, an intelligent individual might almost be tempted to join the opposing party.

            But I jest. Both parties are 100% corrupt and both should be outed. Trolls like D who can only think in offensive monopolar terms however, are the worst. Good ideas back by sound facts can come from anywhere. The Republican political trolls that infest this site almost never bring forth facts or references, and if they do, it is a snapshot of a rapidly moving trend intended to justify an immoral policy that pushes America even further toward corporatocracy. Then they whine when a corporation like Apple uses its immense economic might to fund social causes they don’t personally agree with.

            Well, duh. If you allow corporate exectutives to own your Congress, what did you think was going to happen? In the rush to play partisan politics, you forgot that the corporate power and money is leaving GE and IBM and the coal producers and rapidly moving to liberal tech companies. None of them beholden in any way to the US citizen.

    1. “That’s why today we have the racist Tea Party, do nothing congress, racist & sexist Trump and a second sexual predator on the supreme court, Kavanaugh.”

      Wow! Talk about blind as a bat and totally IGNORANT of the Democratic Party. Sheesh…

      1. Wow, BJR is correct. Racism and sexism are rife in most office workplaces. The fact that you refuse to see it or advocate further efforts to discover all the facts tells us more about you than about the Dumbocrats. Even if there was an equal percentage of sexist or racist democrat pigs as there are republican pigs (an unlikely scenario in the current political environment), it takes a special kind of partisan schmuck to refuse to see the the racism in a significant part of the Tea Party, not to see sexism in the world especially committed by your orange hero, and even worse to deny adequate hearings and investigation when serious allegations are raised and a nominee acts like a lying frat boy on the stand before the Senate to this day. I don’t give a shit about the motives of the Democrats, but everyone who believes in the rights of man as detailed in the declaration of independence and constitution should be ashamed of the the rethuglicans for putting partisan politics above morality and justice.

        I hope the nationwide riots of 1968 don’t happen again, but I foresee that if minorities continue to be treated as second class citizens through gerrymandering, unequal school funding, sexist and racist political appointments, police brutality and unequal incarceration, refugee abuse, and so forth, the current administration will have no one to blame but themselves when the downtrodden revolt. Perhaps the downtrodden will call it a Tea Party against a single party rule that no longer listens to them.

          1. I haven’t read Mike pushing Democratic talking points. His financial stance actually seems to line up with the old GOP. You routinely attack everyone who doesn’t worship every plank of your wing of the new GOP, the isolationist spendaholic Tea Party platform. Give it a rest Goeb. Someday you will wake up and see that Trump actually doesn’t know what he’s doing. He’s the entertainment director on the payroll of the rich donors that own Congress. Things aren’t all happy on Main Street and Wall Street isn’t a good indicator of future economic health. When the corporate tax break actually makes its way into new worker pay and benefits instead of stock buybacks and executive bonuses then we can all celebrate. As a small buz owner I can tell you that we did just fine after 2009. People who claim it was terrible under Obama are just selling their propaganda. We had several strong years of growth and low inflation. Now the uncertainty is off the charts, exports are way down, and inflation is rising. It might do you good to read the business section instead of reposting political talking points.

          2. How about that truth, Goeb?

            I am highly critical of Apple, and definitely critical of your corrupt party. But I am equally critical of the dumbass Democrats. i back up my proposals with references and links, you do not.

            Now you claim I am partisan and clueless? That’s downright funny. Why don’t you attempt to back that up with a shred of evidence to support your delusion, wise guy?

            1. Yes, I am a “wise guy” and thank you for noticing, Mike.

              I’ve posted several times when you are constructively critical of Apple I have backed you 100% and some of the best and poignant posts out there.

              Politics is a different story. You parrot too much party, CNN and late night comedy BS and worse, don’t weigh both sides fairly. You have never given the “orange one” credit for anything in my readings. Like so many others here, you have a lot of company. Also, unless I missed it, not once read you criticizing the Democratic Party.

              That said, it’s all good, you do what you do and I will do what I do… ✌️

    1. I get the impression from the FOIA files that it was more politically cordial with Jobs trying to get his friends appointed to cabinet positions. It wasn’t like they shared a cabin in the woods on the holidays or anything.

      Trump was a “family” friend though.

    2. On Clinton being the lying piece of shit that he is… concerning Lewinsky… Jobs said:

      “I don’t know if you did it, but if so, you’ve got to tell the country,” during a phone call.

  2. When you support the troops you support perpetual wars because wars can’t be fought without troops.

    Therefore, ” Jeff Bezos, due to his $10 million donation to With Honor Fund, a nonpartisan group that aims to help military veterans get elected to Congress,” is super partisan in the worse way. Another reason not to use his Prime. I use Apple products. So the author does not know what partisanship is.

    1. The military can be used for good. Marshall Plan, for example.

      Unfortunately since the 1950s the US military has been deployed more often to guard US corporate access to foreign natural resources, often in non democratic nations that is the real reason the extremist right wing demands insane increases to military spending— to socialize the cost of doing business overseas. For all his tough blabber, Trump acts like a naive child to Saudi Arabia. Apparently that trade deficit is the only one that can’t be balanced with huge tariffs. Why? Better ask Goeb and The Gang.

      1. Yes, corporations, especially big ones, get big Socialist benefits and entitlements but they give it Capitalist names.

        The Marshall Plan’s public history is that of benevolence, good will, and food for Europe. However, it has a secret history: The US rebuilt the devastated Europe in order to rebuild that market – so it was a market and military move – in order to sell it US products and to give birth to hegemony. It worked. It then evolved into a colonialist relationship with the US asserting economic primacy under threat, and expanded world-wide via its fiat currency. Syria, Iraq, Libya, and Iran rebelled and so the US invaded them to various degrees in order to stem the rebellion from the US Petro-dollar.

        The US – acknowledged to be a world empire even by Putin – now needs a continuous infusion of recruits to maintain its unsustainable colonialist hegemony.

        The Martial Plan was founded approx. 70 yrs. ago and approx. 30 yrs. preceding Apple’s. I wonder how Jobs’ Apple might have structured it.

        Goeb is a big Rightwing partisan, but at least he’s an ally on the Apple front.

        1. “Goeb is a big Rightwing partisan, but at least he’s an ally on the Apple front.”

          Well, since the voters in the U.S. is nearly split 50-50 since 2000, I guess one out of two isn’t bad. Thanks, JD…

  3. $5400 eh?
    No wonder Cook uses Apple’s company platform to the fullest extent to advance his LGBT and other social activist agenda when I suppose not all Apple employees agree with his social justice warrior pretensions.

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