President Theodore Roosevelt, perhaps the most intelligent man to ever hold that office, famously said that businesses should not be allowed to make political contributions.
Unfortunately, for decades after, the Republican Party was known as the party of big business, and both parties in the US have sought campaign contributions for business rather aggressively. That’s contributed in turn to the explosion in the amount of money spent on political campaigns, which reportedly has doubled this year over 2016 for seats in the House and Senate.
The Center for Responsible Politics today published data on political contributions by the insurance industry to the 2020 election. The data are remarkably mixed:
- The majority of contributions for Congressional races are going to Republican candidates.
- The majority of contributions in the presidential race are going to Biden.
- Political action committees for lobbyists are contributing at almost a two-to-one rate to Republican candidates.
- Leading insurance companies are offsetting the lobbyists by giving a majority of funds to the Democrats. These include such familar names as USAA, Liberty Mutual, State Farm, Allstate, Nationwide and Hartford.
The top contributors among political action committees in the property and casualty insurance sector are
Corporations do hedge their ability to influence politicians by supporting both parties. However, the insurance industry has an almost inherently conservative bent, so the level of support for Democrats this year may come as a bit of a surprise.