(TheFreedomFlag.com)- According to a report from Public Citizen, social media giant Facebook is the single biggest corporate lobbying spender in the United States. The 2020 data showed how Facebook spent some $19,680,000 on lobbying government and Congressional officials.
Facebook even spent $1 million more than the massive international online marketplace Amazon.
A combination of Facebook money and the promise of silencing political opponents certainly seems like an interesting pitch for Congressional Democrats.
The executive summary of the report describes how Big Tech companies Amazon, Apple, Facebook, and Google have all “come under increased scrutiny for threatening our privacy, democracy, small businesses and workers.”
“In the race to amass monopoly power in their respective markets, these corporations have developed predatory business practices that harvest user data for profit and facilitated discrimination by race, religion, national origin, age, and gender,” the report adds.
The key findings of their study also included the revelation that Big Tech now pumps more money into lobbying than Big Tobacco and Big Oil, the two giants of yesteryear. In 2020, Amazon and Facebook spent almost twice as much as Philip Morris and Exxon on lobbying.
Public Citizen has produced reports like this focusing on the same question since 2018, but this year found a number of new dynamics that changed Big Tech’s approach to dealing with Washington. Since the first report, researchers noted that Big Tech has faced “greater legal and regulatory challenges,” with a series of antitrust lawsuits brought against Google and Facebook in 2020.
Researchers also showed how in 2010, General Electic and PG&E Corp were the top two lobbying spenders. In 2017, Google hit the top spot with AT&T Inc close behind, but Facebook and Amazon were now leading the way with Google not even ranking in the top 10.
In the 2020 presidential election, Big Tech broke records on lobbying spending, with some $124 million handed over to candidates in one of the most contentious national elections in history.
“Throughout the 2020 election cycle, Big Tech spent 5.2% more on lobbying and campaign contributions combined than it did in the 2018 cycle. Figure 2 illustrates that both an increase in lobbying spending as well as campaign contributions are behind this boost,” researchers showed.
With Big Tech more influential than ever, is it any wonder Washington seems to want to let the social media and tech giants decide what we can and can’t say?