The Rittenhouse Review

A Philadelphia Journal of Politics, Finance, Ethics, and Culture

Thursday, December 30, 2004  

Big Donations Roll In at Robust Rate

Corporations and wealthy individuals continue to pay homage to the Bush administration in thanks for gifts they have received and expect to receive in the next four years.

The administration is required by law to disclose the names of major donors to the 55th Presidential Inaugural Committee.

So far, as of December 23, a full week ago, such donors have dropped $7.9 million into the coffers, refusing to allow a massive human tragedy to get in the way of a lame party or two.

Among the corporations that have contributed $250,000 toward the festivities: Altria Corporate Services Inc. (an affiliate of the Philip Morris Cos.), Ameriquest Capital Corp., ExxonMobil Corp., Golden Eagle Industries Inc., Kojaian Ventures L.L.C., Long Beach Acceptance Corp., Occidental Petroleum Corp., Rooney Holdings Inc., Sallie Mae Inc., Southern Co., Stephens Group Inc., Town & Country Credit, and United Technologies Corp.

Individual contributors at the quarter-million-dollar level include Elliott Broidy (of Broidy Capital Management and the Republican Jewish Coalition), Michael Dell (chairman of the board of directors of Dell Inc.), Richard and Nancy Kinder (Mr. Kinder is a former president of Enron Corp. and chairman and chief executive officer of the energy conglomerate Kinder Morgan Inc.), and T. Boone Pickens, founder of now-bankrupt Mesa Petroleum Inc. (also doing business, while viable, as Mesa L.P.) and dismally unsuccessful “takeover artist.”

Corporate contributors of $100,000 so far include: Bensco Inc., Benson Football, Boeing Co., GMAC, International Paper Co., Linger Longer Development Co., Northrop Grumman Corp., Qualcomm Inc., Union Pacific Corp., and Valhi Inc.

Trade association donors at the same amount include the Independent Community Bankers of America (Is your bank a member? Call 800/422-8439, toll-free, and ask.) and the Nuclear Energy Institute (Is your local utility, corporation, or college a member? Check this list [PDF file].).

The names of other donors, both corporations and individuals, are available at the inaugural committee’s web site.

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