Facebook, Google, and other tech giants donated tens of thousands of dollars to a Republican group that’s pushing voter suppression laws (FB, GOOGL)

Mark Zuckerberg

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In the first quarter of 2021, Facebook, Google, and several other major American companies donated hundreds of thousands of dollars to a Republican political group that advocates for voter suppression laws around the United States.

Facebook donated $50,000, and Google donated $20,000, according to a new report from Popular Information, alongside a $50,000 donation from AT&T and $100,000+ donations from two major pharmaceutical companies: Eli Lilly and AstraZeneca.

The organization that received those donations — the Republican State Leadership Committee — describes itself as, “the largest national organization focused on electing Republicans to state offices in every corner of the nation.” 

Georgia Senate Republicans have vowed to:

✅ Ban ‘At-Will’ Absentee Voting
✅ Outlaw Ballot Drop Boxes
✅ Require Voter ID for Absentee Ballots

We must have election integrity!https://t.co/O6hp5VkEM5

— Republican State Leadership Committee (@RSLC) December 12, 2020

The RSLC supports Republican candidates that have supported voter suppression laws, and itself advocates for said laws.

According to the Popular Information report, Republican leaders have introduced 361 bills across 47 states that could restrict voting.

Voting restrictions are often introduced under the guise of “election integrity” and as “anti-cheating” measures, despite voting fraud being extremely rare. It’s so rare, in fact, that you’re more likely to be struck by lightning than to commit the act.

A Facebook representative referred to the donation to RSLC as “membership dues” that it pays to both major political parties. “It is standard practice for us to support organizations like this on both sides of the aisle,” the statement said. “While earlier this year we paused spending from FBPAC, we use corporate funds to pay membership dues like these to the Republican Lieutenant Governors’ Association as we do in our support for the Democratic Lieutenant Governors’ Association. None of these funds were used in the passage of voting legislation in Georgia.”

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Both Facebook and Google have spoken out against a controversial new voting law in Georgia that enacts a variety of voter restrictions. 

Read more: These 10 high-profile Republicans who dumped Trump are mostly wary to back Biden’s re-election. At least for now.

Much of the current push for “election integrity” stems from the repeatedly disproven claim from former President Donald Trump that the 2020 US presidential election was “rigged.” Trump and his campaign filed dozens of lawsuits after the results of the election declared President Joe Biden the winner. None of those suits were successful.

Google did not respond to a request for comment as of publishing.

Got a tip? Contact Insider senior correspondent Ben Gilbert via email (bgilbert@insider.com), or Twitter DM (@realbengilbert). We can keep sources anonymous. Use a non-work device to reach out. PR pitches by email only, please.

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Source:: Businessinsider – Politics


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