Sweet, sweet cash: Which politicians get the most from the candy industry?
Make no mistake, Halloween is the best day of the year for candy manufacturers.
But before the biggest candy makers pull in billions on Oct. 31, they shell out a fair bit of money backing candidates and lobbying Congress.
Mars is the dominant producer of Halloween candies, manufacturing M&M’s, Snickers, Twix, Skittles and Starburst, among other treats.
Since 2014, large donors affiliated with Mars have overwhelmingly favored Democrats. This year is no different, with more than $34,000 going to Democratic candidates and another $15,000 going to the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee, compared to $5,500 to Republicans.
While individual affiliates of The Hershey Company have given mostly to Democratic candidates — $12,366 to $3,185 — the company’s PACs have given $17,500 to Republicans and $12,655 to Democrats. Unsurprisingly, affiliates of the Hershey, Pa.-based company gave its four largest contributions to Pennsylvania candidates, with Sen. Bob Casey ($3,751) being the biggest beneficiary.
For the first election cycle ever, large donors working for Nestle USA and the company’s PACs have favored Democrats. Affiliates of the Swiss food and drink company — which makes Baby Ruth, 100 Grand Bar, Butterfinger, Laffy Taffy, Nerds and Crunch — gave 78 percent of their $70,000 in contributions to Democratic causes.
Conversely, affiliates of Jelly Belly, the jelly bean giant and maker of BeanBoozled, have long been supporters of the GOP. Employees with the Fairfield, Calif.-based company have given more than $420,000 to Republicans since 2004 and just $2,800 to Democrats.
The majority of the conservative political contributions are given by the company’s board chairman Herman Rowland Sr. This cycle, they have given $20,700 entirely to GOP candidates, with the biggest recipients being Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) and Montana Senate challenger Matt Rosendale at $5,000 each.
Affiliates of Mondelez International, maker of Oreos, Sour Patch Kids and Swedish Fish, haven’t spent much this cycle but has been balanced, giving $14,000 to Democrats and $13,000 to Republicans.
Representing the biggest candy makers, the National Confectioners Association (NCA) ramped up its contributions during the 2018 election cycle, giving $447,373 to candidates and PACs, of which 57 percent has gone to Republicans.
Trade, taxes, regulations among biggest issues for candy makers
In addition to giving more to candidates, NCA has increased its lobbying presence in 2018, spending north of $500,000 through September 30th. The organization has been especially interested in the Sugar Policy Modernization Act, which would eliminate bailouts of the sugar industry and ease import quotas on foreign sugar that confectioners say hurt their business. The bill was voted down as an amendment to the 2018 Farm Bill in May.
Amid its lobbying efforts, NCA also held multiple events at Trump properties in 2017.
Hershey ($840,000 on lobbying in 2018) and Nestle ($1.07 million) are also interested in the structure of the sugar program as well as the renegotiation of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA).
Mars is the most active in lobbying, spending a combined $3.6 million between 2017 and 2018. The company shares the same interests as the industry as a whole, including the issue of genetically modified organism (GMO) labeling — the United States Department of Agriculture proposed new guidelines this year that GMO foods must be labeled as such by 2020.
The post Sweet, sweet cash: Which politicians get the most from the candy industry? appeared first on no deposit bonus forex News.