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February 8, 1996

AT&T Buys Themselves A Telecom Bill

Reuters reported that Common Cause conducted a study which shows that AT&T, and others, bought the Telecom Bill by making record "soft money" donations. "Soft money" refers to contributions made outside of the limits set by federal law, including large contributions made by individuals and political action committees and direct corporate or union contributions.

Common Cause said that long-distance carriers such as AT&T, gave their largest political donations ever in the final months that a major telecommunications bill was making its way through Congress. Common Cause further said, that AT&T Corporation gave their largest soft money contributions in the weeks and months after the lawmakers on the conference panel were named.

Common Cause President, Ann McBride, told Reuters that "[t]he integrity of the legislative process is destroyed by huge telecommunications companies which carefully target millions in campaign dollars to win favorable and lucrative results on Capital Hill!"