Wednesday, June 25, 2008
House Democrats who flipped their votes to support retroactive immunity for telecom companies in last week’s FISA bill took thousands of dollars more from phone companies than Democrats who consistently voted against legislation with an immunity provision.
According to an analysis by MAPLight.org, 94 Democrats who changed their positions received on average $8,359 in contributions from Verizon, AT&T and Sprint from January, 2005, to March, 2008.
Retroactive immunity could squash about 40 lawsuits pending against telecommunication companies that helped the government monitor the telecommunications traffic of Americans without warrants.
The top ten U.S. House recipients of telecom contributions include:
1. Rep. James Clyburn, $29,500
2. Rep. Steny Hoyer, $29,000
3. Rep. Rahm Emanuel, $28,000
4. Rep. Frederick Boucher, $27,500
5. Rep. Gregory Meeks, $26,000
6. Rep. Joseph Crowley, $24,500
7. Speaker Nancy Pelosi, $24,500
8. Rep. Melissa Bean, $24,000
9. Rep. Thomas Edwards, $22,500
10. Rep. Joe Baca, $22,100
The money provides special interests with a bigger megaphone.