Telecoms bet on congressional rookies – Tony Romm – POLITICO


Telecoms bet on congressional rookies – Tony Romm – POLITICO

AT&T, Comcast and Verizon have donated heavily to incoming members of Congress, cultivating early relationships with the next generation of lawmakers and surpassing the efforts of Internet companies like Google and Facebook, which are just beginning to up their game in Washington.

With the help of their well-stocked political action committees, the three wireless and cable giants last election cycle cast a wide net, according to a POLITICO analysis of campaign finance data. They targeted many of the 65 newcomers to Capitol Hill along with scores of familiar incumbents as the industry prepares for new legislative battles in 2015 over net neutrality and other communications laws.

AT&T chipped in $5,000 to David Perdue, the newly elected Republican senator from Georgia, and $8,000 to Mike Rounds, the incoming GOP senator from South Dakota. Comcast gave $1,000 to Dave Brat, the Virginia Republican who unexpectedly bested former House Majority Leader Eric Cantor in a primary earlier this year. The cable giant also shelled out $10,000 in support to Debbie Dingell and $2,000 to Ruben Gallego, a new Democratic congressman from Arizona.

Verizon supported many of the same people. It even backed two candidates in the same race — Ernst and Democratic Rep. Bruce Braley, who duked it out for Iowa’s open Senate seat.

via Telecoms bet on congressional rookies – Tony Romm – POLITICO.

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