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brettw 08-25-2011 1:26 PM

Companies Stop Political Donations
Personally, I think political donations are a waste of money. I've never come across anybody running for office, that I'd give $1 of my hard earned money to for a campaign. This is a great story:


Heads of over 100 major companies have joined Starbucks Corp. CEO Howard Schultz in a pledge to boycott political donations until Congress and the president agree on a long-term debt and deficit plan, Schultz announced in a letter Wednesday.

"Remarkably, the initiative triggered a national dialogue and a groundswell of support," Schultz wrote, adding that in the 10 days since releasing his pledge, he "heard directly from thousands of concerned citizens and was astounded by the volume of support we received through calls, emails, social media exchanges and various other public votes of confidence."

That included over 100 business leaders who signed on to Schultz' initiative, including Myron Ullman of JC Penney, Duncan Niederauer of NYSE, and Walter Robb, co-chief executive of Whole Foods, Tim Armstrong of AOL, Mickey Drexler of J. Crew Group, and billionaire investor Pete Peterson.

Schultz earlier this month issued an internal message at Starbucks reportedly expressing dismay over "the lack of cooperation and irresponsibility among elected officials as they have put partisan agendas before the people's agenda." The response to that message led him on Aug. 15 to issue the campaign donation boycott pledge to business leaders, casting it as a strike to force politicians to act swiftly on the debt crisis and clean up what he views as their dysfunction.

Partisan gridlock in Washington was on full display this summer when Republicans in Congress and the White House sparred over raising the debt ceiling. They failed to reach an agreement until the day before the U.S. was expected to begin defaulting on its debt, causing panic and uncertainty. Ratings agencies have since downgraded the U.S. credit rating.

Schultz' pledge also asks leaders to personally take action by accelerating job creation within their own companies.

Schultz has long donated to Democrats, handing over around $100,000 over the past 15 years to Democratic candidates and committees, according to the Center for Responsive politics. The Center lists a single Republican donation by Schultz: $1,000 to Sen. John McCain in 1999.

On Wednesday, website www.upwardspiral2011.org and an accompanying Facebook page were launched to connect citizens, businesses and organizations over Schultz' pledge.

polarbill 08-25-2011 1:47 PM

Well I don't like Shultz because of the way he treated the Sonic fans when he sold the team to a group he knew would move it out of seattle but I like this on the surface.

john211 08-25-2011 2:38 PM

Then the companies that continue will only get only more of the favors.

Who lives anywhere near where a huge new hospital is being built?

trace 08-26-2011 4:49 AM

I love the concept, but it won't mean much until the companies that need the really big favors (oil, banks, health insurers, large construction contractors, etc) get on board, and unfortunately that probably isn't going to happen.

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