Google Leads Among Geeks Lobbying Congress

Google spends more than other tech vendors to lobby lawmakers

Google is still the tech company that spends most lavishly to make its influence known in Washington, D.C., according to a report analyzing the lobbying activity of technology firms.

Using data from disclosure forms filed with the Clerk of the House of Representatives, the oversight group Consumer Watchdog added up the efforts of tech-company representatives to get in front of lawmakers and state their employers’ case.

Facebook’s spending on lobbying rose 47 percent between 2012 and 2013, from $980,000 during the third quarter of 2012 to 1.4 million during 2013.

Microsoft also boosted its spending by 20 percent, from $1.9 million in 2012 to $2.2 million during the third quarter of this year.

Google cut its spending on lobbyists, but still spent $3.4 million during the third quarter – nearly three times what Facebook spent during the same quarter. Google’s thirst for influence outpaced that of Verizon (down 2 percent, to $3.04 million), Verizon Wireless (up 19 percent, to $1.2 million) and AT&T (up 23 percent, to $4.3 million).

Apple’s lobbying efforts shot up 111 percent between the third quarter of 2012 and 2013, but still amounted to only $970,000 this year. Cisco Systems spent $890,000; IBM spent $1.18 million; Intel spent $980,000 and Oracle spent $1.36 million.

Overall for the year, Google ($7.8 million spent year-to-date) still came in far below the U.S. Chamber of Commerce ($35.9 million year-to-date) and the National Association of Realtors ($17.7 million year-to-date) and even below AT&T’s total ($8 million year-to-date).

Verizon, AT&T, Google, United Technologies, Comcast and the National Cable & Telecommunications Association represented the tech industry among the top-20 organizations whose lobbying spending was calculated by OpenSecrets.org.

The OpenSecrets site lists lobbying spending broken down by company, issue, industry, lobbying agency and other criteria.

Of companies lobbying on issues related to Science and Technology, Google was No. 1 and Microsoft was No. 2.

 

Image:Shutterstock.com/ Mesut Dogan

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