More than 40 percent of the 125 members of Congress serving on the three committees investigating Toyota have received campaign donations over the past 10 years, a total of $135,673 from the Toyota dealers' PAC, from dealership owners and employees, and from staff at Toyota's U.S. operation, a Washington Post analysis shows. Members of Congress received an additional $1 million for their campaigns through giving to state parties and PACs.
Toyota Motor North America also has backed charities and other nonprofit groups with strong ties to members of Congress, giving $1 million in 2008 and 2009. Some of that money financed events honoring or entertaining the members.
Other auto companies -- both domestic and foreign -- also have employees and PACs that direct large sums of money to political campaigns and lobbying. General Motors nearly doubled its annual lobbying budget of $7.5 million as it sought a government bailout in 2007 and 2008. Its employees and dealerships have given campaigns more than $1 million over the past decade.
Members of Congress with some of the deepest financial ties to Toyota include some with important roles in the ongoing investigation. These members' districts also have the greatest number of jobs tied to the automaker.
State governors groups also have received funding from Toyota Motor North America in recent months. The Democratic Governors Association received $50,400 in November and December, and the Republican Governors Association received $25,000 in November.
Governors from the four states that host Toyota plants or have other company interests have provided the highest-profile support so far.
Is Obama A Communist Or A Nazi?
1 day ago