This Is How Little It Cost Goldman To Bribe America's Senators To Fast Track Obama's TPP Bill

Tyler Durden's picture

It took just a few days after the stunning defeat of Obama's attempt to fast-track the Trans Pacific Partnership bill in the Senate at the hands of his own Democratic party, before everything returned back to normal and the TPP fast-track was promptly passed. Why? The simple answer: money. Or rather, even more money.

Because while the actual contents of the TPP may be highly confidential, and their public dissemination may lead to prison time for the "perpetrator" of such illegal transparency, we now know just how much it cost corporations to bribe the Senate to do the bidding of the "people." In the Supreme Court sense, of course, in which corporations are "people."

According to an analysis by the Guardian, fast-tracking the TPP, meaning its passage through Congress without having its contents available for debate or amendments, was only possible after lots of corporate money exchanged hands with senators. The US Senate passed Trade Promotion Authority (TPA) – the fast-tracking bill – by a 65-33 margin on 14 May. Last Thursday, the Senate voted 62-38 to bring the debate on TPA to a close.

Those impressive majorities follow months of behind-the-scenes wheeling and dealing by the world’s most well-heeled multinational corporations with just a handful of holdouts.

Using data from the Federal Election Commission, the chart below (based on data from the following spreadsheet) shows all donations that corporate members of the US Business Coalition for TPP made to US Senate campaigns between January and March 2015, when fast-tracking the TPP was being debated in the Senate.

The result: it took a paltry $1.15 million in bribes to get everyone in the Senate on the same page. And the biggest shocker: with a total of $195,550 in "donations", or more than double the second largest donor UPS, was none other than Goldman Sachs.

The summary findings:

  • Out of the total $1,148,971 given, an average of $17,676.48 was donated to each of the 65 “yea” votes.
  • The average Republican member received $19,673.28 from corporate TPP supporters.
  • The average Democrat received $9,689.23 from those same donors.

The amounts given rise dramatically when looking at how much each senator running for re-election received.

Two days before the fast-track vote, Obama was a few votes shy of having the filibuster-proof majority he needed. Ron Wyden and seven other Senate Democrats announced they were on the fence on 12 May, distinguishing themselves from the Senate’s 54 Republicans and handful of Democrats as the votes to sway.

  • In just 24 hours, Wyden and five of those Democratic holdouts – Michael Bennet of Colorado, Dianne Feinstein of California, Claire McCaskill of Missouri, Patty Murray of Washington, and Bill Nelson of Florida – caved and voted for fast-track.
  • Bennet, Murray, and Wyden – all running for re-election in 2016 – received $105,900 between the three of them. Bennet, who comes from the more purple state of Colorado, got $53,700 in corporate campaign donations between January and March 2015, according to Channing’s research.
  • Almost 100% of the Republicans in the US Senate voted for fast-track – the only two non-votes on TPA were a Republican from Louisiana and a Republican from Alaska.
  • Senator Rob Portman of Ohio, who is the former US trade representative, has been one of the loudest proponents of the TPP. (In a comment to the Guardian Portman’s office said: “Senator Portman is not a vocal proponent of TPP - he has said it’s still being negotiated and if and when an agreement is reached he will review it carefully.”) He received $119,700 from 14 different corporations between January and March, most of which comes from donations from Goldman Sachs ($70,600), Pfizer ($15,700), and Procter & Gamble ($12,900). Portman is expected to run against former Ohio governor Ted Strickland in 2016 in one of the most politically competitive states in the country.
  • Seven Republicans who voted “yea” to fast-track and are also running for re-election next year cleaned up between January and March. Senator Johnny Isakson of Georgia received $102,500 in corporate contributions. Senator Roy Blunt of Missouri, best known for proposing a Monsanto-written bill in 2013 that became known as the Monsanto Protection Act, received $77,900 – $13,500 of which came from Monsanto.
  • Arizona senator and former presidential candidate John McCain received $51,700 in the first quarter of 2015. Senator Richard Burr of North Carolina received $60,000 in corporate donations. Eighty-one-year-old senator Chuck Grassley of Iowa, who is running for his seventh Senate term, received $35,000. Senator Tim Scott of South Carolina, who will be running for his first full six-year term in 2016, received $67,500 from pro-TPP corporations.

“It’s a rare thing for members of Congress to go against the money these days,” said Mansur Gidfar, spokesman for the anti-corruption group Represent.Us. “They know exactly which special interests they need to keep happy if they want to fund their reelection campaigns or secure a future job as a lobbyist.

How can we expect politicians who routinely receive campaign money, lucrative job offers, and lavish gifts from special interests to make impartial decisions that directly affect those same special interests?” Gidfar said. “As long as this kind of transparently corrupt behavior remains legal, we won’t have a government that truly represents the people.”

In other news, following last week's DOJ crackdown on now openly criminal FX market manipulation and rigging by the big banks, in which precisely zero bankers have been arrested, we are happy to announce that "transparently corrupt behavior" in the Senate, and everywhere else, will remain not only legal, but very well funded.

But what is truly scariest, is just how little it costs corporations to bribe America's "elected" politicians, and make them serve the best interests of a few billionaire shareholders over the grave of what once used to be America's middle class.

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cherry picker's picture

Where is the Department of Justice?

In Switzerland hosing FIFA because they didn't like their decision on who is hosting games.

Newsboy's picture

More "public service" from Government Sachs.

e_goldstein's picture

Doin' god's work the squiddy is.

Too bad that god is Cthulhu.

El Oregonian's picture

Are those inflation adjusted bribery numbers?

Just a thought.

balolalo's picture

THE BIGGER QUESTIONS ARE:

1) what behind the scenes kickbacks were offered?

2) what sinister ulterior motives are at play?

come on TYLERS, THESE GUYS PLAN AHEAD

boogerbently's picture

What's sad is, most congressmen can be "bought" for $10K or less.

Anusocracy's picture

Not surprising.

They are worthless.

Troll Magnet's picture

This isn't kosher...Or is it?

Ignatius's picture

Ever notice how the Blankfeins and Buffets of this world never fall out of tall buildings?

Oh regional Indian's picture

Ever notice how their planes continue to give perfect service? PERFECT. 

It's almost like if no one WANTED anyo0ne to die, no one would (of un-natural causes that is).

Also, these are not THE bribes. This is sheeple-load (to swallow).

Seriously? A paltry 2-3 mil? No way, THIS is where the Jeffery Epstiens of the world come in. This is where the Franklin scandal comes in....

Got to think bigger, different...

Bigger, different guitar...

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lk1TSBW_368

 

usednabused's picture

I could believe that paltry 2-3 million. After all they are  some cheap cocksuckers...

Oh regional Indian's picture

Oh yes they are, but the true "prices" paid for permissions to loot/destroy entire nations, INCLUDING YOUR OWN are way bigger.

This 2-3 mill is the bull-shit tip of the proverbial ice-berg is my point.

 

philipat's picture

Perhaps the cost of buying Senators is going down commensurate with the decline in real wages for the 99%? More likely, though, it's a supply and demand economics 1.01 issue as 99% of Senators are now for sale??

VinceFostersGhost's picture

 

 

Turn that trick bitch.

 

Do you have my money or what?

Son of Loki's picture

" Daddy, can I be a Senator when I grow up? "

VinceFostersGhost's picture

 

 

I will not have my daughter become a common whore.

 

So, the answer is no.

Theosebes Goodfellow's picture

This is exactly why we will never see a FARA type act on lobbyists from Congress. These SOBs can regulate themselves, what make us believe they can regulate anything? These whores are bought-and-paid for. Woe is my nation.

Gobbler's picture

We have viable choices.  There's Bernie Sanders the porno king.  Rand Paul the isolationist.  And Elizabeth Warren the American Indian.  So what are you complaining about?

Bangin7GramRocks's picture

"I'll suck your dick for that rock!"

boogerbently's picture

Yep,

2-3 million$$$.....how many times a day ?

chunga's picture

ORI you're quite a musician. Give this a try, simple chords but you must bring attitude (funk) with the right hand.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mGCFhW_M6Vo

Concering TPP...this filthy whoring could be called a perverted form of collective bargaining. These big corporations seem to have formed a union agaisnt the sheep. They usually hate that.

Tell me Walmart...do you fucking assholes have an internal video about this? Before TPP is over, plebs are going to be issued a temporary federal license to possess cash.

 

Oh regional Indian's picture

Thanks Chunga and thanks too for the link. Man in the vid is a smooth player and I saw his right hand funk.

Do you play?

chunga's picture

Not professionally, although I have had people offer to pay me to *stop* playing. I have fun and make a lot of noise. Actually I do have a constantly evolving rendition of "Dixie" I play on a strat that I'm proud of. I'll be blasting it into a audience of cows later today.

This fairly new band  "Houndmouth" has me intrigued lately. They're playing in a few weeks not far from me, we might just go.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n9q7EjHxYsE

Oh regional Indian's picture

Haaah...nice visual and I'm sure you're being modest.

Nice sound, Houndmouth has, listening to a longer concert on YT right now.

 

chunga's picture

I've been spamming houndmouth links for too long lol.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zTAuJBLEwzs

Some tunes they all change instruments...like The Band.

junction's picture

It is more than just money, there are also those pedophile complaints that get buried as long as the politician toes the line.  No Congress member wants to end up like Dennis Hastert or Larry Craig.  

Took Red Pill's picture

True! Plus it's probably just the first installment of many to come.

saveUSsavers's picture

Goldman knows where all those fucker's OFFSHORE $$$ is ! THEY SET UP THE ACCOUNTS ! The Dynesty Trust !

pauhana's picture

How cum no one is asking how a buggering high school wrestling coach made enough money in Congress to be able to pay $3.5M in extortion to his boy toy?  And he would have paid more if he hadn't been caught.  Deep pockets these slimy pols have.  No wonder everyone wants to be president.  Must pay even better!

Gent's picture

$10K and they won't even do ass-to-mouth..WTF?

Icelandicsaga...............................................'s picture

FROM  .. Selling out pays. If you’re a corporation or lobbyist, what’s the best way to “buy” a member of Congress? Secretly promise them a million dollars or more in pay if they come to work for you after they leave office. Once a public official makes a deal to go to work for a lobbying firm or corporation after leaving office, he or she becomes loyal to the future employer. And since those deals are done in secret, legislators are largely free to pass laws, special tax cuts, or earmarks that benefit their future employer with little or no accountability to the public. While campaign contributions and super PACS are a big problem, the every day bribery of the revolving door may be the most pernicious form of corruption today. (See our post on Monday about current members of Congress already negotiating for jobs on K Street) -   In the expose . In This Town ..

In 1974, just 3% of retiring members of Congress became lobbyists. Today, 50% of retiring Senators and 42% of retiring House members stay in DC and become lobbyists. The more than 1,500% increase goes a long way towards explaining how an entrenched, permanent political class has risen in DC. Selling out pays. If you’re a corporation or lobbyist, what’s the best way to “buy” a member of Congress? Secretly promise them a million dollars or more in pay if they come to work for you after they leave office. Once a public official makes a deal to go to work for a lobbying firm or corporation after leaving office, he or she becomes loyal to the future employer. And since those deals are done in secret, legislators are largely free to pass laws, special tax cuts, or earmarks that benefit their future employer with little or no accountability to the public. While campaign contributions and super PACS are a big problem, the every day bribery of the revolving door may be the most pernicious form of corruption today. (See our post on Monday about current members of Congress already negotiating for jobs on K Street) - See more at: http://www.republicreport.org/2012/make-it-rain-revolving-door/#sthash.B... Selling out pays. If you’re a corporation or lobbyist, what’s the best way to “buy” a member of Congress? Secretly promise them a million dollars or more in pay if they come to work for you after they leave office. Once a public official makes a deal to go to work for a lobbying firm or corporation after leaving office, he or she becomes loyal to the future employer. And since those deals are done in secret, legislators are largely free to pass laws, special tax cuts, or earmarks that benefit their future employer with little or no accountability to the public. While campaign contributions and super PACS are a big problem, the every day bribery of the revolving door may be the most pernicious form of corruption today. (See our post on Monday about current members of Congress already negotiating for jobs on K Street) - See more at: http://www.republicreport.org/2012/make-it-rain-revolving-door/#sthash.B...
deimos178's picture

seasonally adjusted, after all, it's drinking season.

COSMOS's picture

When corporations became the people, people like me and you became flies.

jeff montanye's picture

As flies to wanton boys are we to th' gods. They kill us for their sport. 

DavidC's picture

I'm still waiting for Goldman Sachs to open my deposit account.

DavidC

yogibear's picture

You mean "Just US", the elite.

Handful of Dust's picture

Moar job creation ... in Asia.

847328_3527's picture

Yes. "Trade deals," usually mean more jobs will be shipped overseas for cheap/slave labor as well as opening our borders even wider for more cheap labor to flood in.

 

The "Bottom Line" is what matters ... not American jobs or standard of living.

messymerry's picture

I'm from the corporation and I'm here to help.

;-D

Mr. Schnitzel Face's picture

Yo, I got these cheeseburgers man....... yo, I suck yo d*** man...

stant's picture

If you like. Being monetized In the last 25 yrs you will love being conditized

3Wishes's picture

Your forgetting the Peado photos and the drug abuse.

NOTW777's picture

theres a difference between TPP and TPA

Coletrane's picture

over there it's called bribery....here, we call it lobbying

doctor10's picture

If a bill hasn't been available to a representatives constituents for comment and feedback, their constituents have been denied representation -and hence any vote cast by their representative should be null and void.

TeamDepends's picture

Boycott every fucking one of these companies.

buzzardsluck's picture

You can't boycott every business in this fucking country, it's just not going to happen.  EVERYTHING of consequence is setup to fuck everyone 100% of the time.  If you doubt me, look at the conglomerates that own some of the companies.

buzzardsluck's picture

HAHAHAHA BTW to these companies only 'giving' this amount of dollars.