Bush leads in donations from federal contractors

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George W. Bush, who advocates a reduced role for the federal government, received more than twice as many campaign donations from the employees and political action committees of the nation's top 25 federal contractors as did his opponent, Vice President Al Gore, a Public i study has found.

The Texas governor received $132,555, or roughly 13/100 of 1 percent of the more than $100 million in “hard money” he has raised for his presidential campaign. Gore raised $59,700 from top federal contractors, an almost identical percentage of the more than $45 million he has raised in this election cycle. The figures are based on data provided by the Center for Responsive Politics.

“Hard money” is the money that comes from individuals and political action committees (not corporations or labor unions) sent directly to candidates or party committees. These contributions are limited to $2,000 for individuals and $10,000 for PACs per election cycle and is reported to the Federal Election Commission.

Among the top donors to the Bush campaign are telecommunications giant AT&T Corp. ($15,500), aeronautics and communications giant Lockheed Martin ($14,800), GTE, the telephone company that has since merged with Bell Atlantic Corp. to form Verizon Communications Inc. ($12,280), defense and aviation firm Raytheon Corp. ($11,400), home electronics manufacturer General Electric ($11,400) and Halliburton Corp. ($11,750), the energy supplies giant where Dick Cheney worked before the Republican governor chose him as his running mate.

Major donors to the Gore campaign in this group are AT&T ($22,250), Lockheed Martin ($8,250), aerospace giant Boeing ($4,500) and Raytheon ($3,500).

Federal Procurement Data System’s list of top 25 contractors also includes industrial giants General Dynamics and United Technologies, and CBS Corp., which was part of the Westinghouse group until recently. Also figuring in the list are the University of California and California Institute of Technology, whose laboratories conduct federally funded researches.

In the fiscal 1999, the top 25 contractors received federal government business worth $75,606,632,000, according to the Federal Procurement Data System. This is more than 41 percent of the total federal government contracts of $183,119,003,000 during the same period.

Corporations and other organizations are not allowed to make direct contributions to candidates. Companies, however, can make unlimited “soft money” contributions to political parties, and many of the top companies figured in the Federal Procurement Data System list have made such contributions worth several hundred thousand dollars to either the Democratic or Republican parties, or to both.

Here’s the list:

Bush

Company

Donations

AT&T Corp.

$15,500

Lockheed Martin Corp.

14,800

GTE Corp.

12,280

Halliburton Co. (Inc)

11,750

General Electric

11,400

Raytheon Co. Inc.

11,400

Boeing Inc.

8,550

United Technologies Corp.

7,975

Litton Industries Inc.

7,000

TRW Inc.

6,250

CBS Corp.

4,800

Allied Signal Inc.

4,750

Northrop Grumman Corp.

4,750

Bechtel Group Inc.

3,250

General Dynamics Corp.

2,800

Carlyle Group

2,000

Textron Inc.

1,250

Fluor Corp.

1,000

United Space Alliance

800

Computer Sciences

250

Total

$132,555

Gore

Company

Donations

AT&T Corp.

$22,250

Lockheed

Martin Corp.

8,250

Boeing Co.

4,500

CBS Corp.

4,000

Raytheon

3,500

United Technologies Corp.

3,500

General Electric

3,500

GTE Corp.

3,250

TRW Inc.

1,950

ITT Industries Inc.

1,250

General Dynamics Corp.

1,000

Carlyle Group

1,000

Textron Inc.

1,000

Bechtel Group Inc.

500

Science Applications

250

Total

$59,700

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