JPMorgan Chase & Co will again make political donations to U.S. lawmakers, but will not give Republican members of Congress who voted to nullify President Joe Biden’s election victory, according to an internal note Friday seen by the news agency Reuters.
The bank was among many companies that halted political donations following the deadly January 6 Capitol riots when supporters of former President Donald Trump tried to prevent Congress from certifying the election.
A few hours later, 147 Republicans, the vast majority of them in the House of Representatives, voted to overturn the results of the Electoral College that Trump falsely claimed to be tainted by fraud.
Following a review, the country’s top lender will resume its donation this month through its Political Action Committee (CAP), but will continue to freeze donations to a “handful” of the 147 lawmakers it had previously supported, said the bank.
The pause will last during the 2021-2022 election cycle, which includes the November midterm elections, after which JPMorgan will review whether contributions to individual lawmakers are resumed individually, he said.
“It was a unique and historic moment in which we believe the country needed our elected officials to put aside differences and demonstrate unity,” the bank wrote about the Jan. 6 vote to certify Biden’s victory.
JPMorgan noted that its CAP is an important tool for participating in the political process in the United States. PACs are organized political committees with the goal of raising money to support or, in some cases, oppose electoral candidates.
“Democracy, by nature, requires active participation, commitment and commitment to people with opposing views. That’s why government and business need to work together, ”JPMorgan wrote.
As part of its renewed spending strategy, the bank will also extend donations beyond legislators overseeing financial matters to those acting on issues the bank considers “moral and economic imperatives for our country,” such as addressing the racial wealth gap, education and criminal justice reform.
Since the initial reaction in January, companies have been tackling how to resume spending on CAP, seen by pressure groups as important to access policymakers, without alienating other stakeholders, including their CAP-funded employees. .
The American Bankers Association PAC, one of the largest in the country, began giving up again in March, according to federal records.
Although JPMorgan did not appoint any legislators to its note, the bank’s new policy runs the risk of alienating Republicans with influence over banking policy, some of whom are already angry at their active attitude on issues such as change climate change and racial equity.
Of the 147 lawmakers, JPMorgan donated $ 10,000 each to House Finance Committee members Blaine Luetkemeyer and Lee Zeldin, and House Republican leader Kevin McCarthy, among others, during the 2019-2020 election cycle. , according to the Center for Responsive Politics (CRP). Representatives of lawmakers did not immediately respond to requests for comment.
All in all, JPMorgan’s PAC gave nearly $ 1 million to candidates and federal committees that supported candidates during the 2019-2020 election cycle, according to CRP.
Of the $ 600,300 he gave to federal candidates, nearly 60 percent went to Republicans and the rest to Democrats, according to CRP data, a mix that is likely to swing to the left as the bank supports a wide range of social and economic issues. .
Overall, commercial banks have increased political spending in recent years, distributing $ 14.6 million to federal candidates in the 2020 cycle, the second-highest amount since 1990, according to the data.
After the 2008 financial crisis, this mix favored Republicans, but in recent years banks have increased spending on Democrats as they try to rebuild bipartisan support in Congress.