SANTA MONICA, Calif., Oct. 24, 2016 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Google increased its 2016 third-quarter federal lobbying spending 4.2 percent to $3.81 million from $3.65 million in the comparable 2015 period, but fell to second place in lobbying expenditures among 16 technology and communications companies tracked by Consumer Watchdog.
AT&T took the lead as its spending soared more than $1 million in 2016's third quarter to $4.11 million, a 41.7 percent increase from $2.90 million in the third quarter of 2015. In the 2014 period the telecommunications giant spent percent $3.47 million.
Lobbying disclosure reports filed last week with the Clerk of the House of Representatives showed that in addition to Google and AT&T seven other companies tracked by the nonpartisan, nonprofit public interest group increased their spending.
View the lobbying disclosure forms here: http://disclosures.house.gov/ld/ldsearch.aspx
Oracle, which had been spending at record levels for the company, cut its lobbying expenditures by 19.0 percent to $2.01 million in 2016 from a record $2.48 million in the third quarter of 2015, the disclosure records showed.
However, Amazon posted a substantial gain in outlays, increasing its lobbying spending 34.1 percent to $2.71 million in 2016 from $2.02 million in the third quarter of 2015. It had spent $1.18 million on lobbying in the third quarter of 2014.
"Nine of the 16 tech and communication companies tracked by Consumer Watchdog spent more than $2 million on lobbying in the third quarter once again demonstrating how our democracy has been hijacked by corporate interests," said John M. Simpson, Consumer Watchdog's Privacy Project director. "Washington is all about the money."
Facebook spent $2.20 million in the third quarter of 2016, a decrease of 15.1 percent from $2.59 million in the third quarter of 2015. The social networking company spent $2.45 million in 2014.
Microsoft, which used to lead the tech lobbying industry expenditures, also topped the $2 million level in the third quarter, spending $2.22 million in 2016, an increase of 17.5 percent from $1.89 million in 2015. That compares with $1.66 million in the third quarter of 2014.
Here are the 2016 third-quarter lobbying amounts for the five other tech firms:
-- Apple spent $1.07 million, a 9.2 percent increase from $980,000 in 2015.
-- Cisco Systems spent $640,000, a 9.9 percent decrease from $710,000 in 2015.
-- IBM spent $870,000, a 1.2 increase from $860,000 in 2015.
-- Intel spent $870,925, a 17.8 percent decrease from $1.06 million in 2015.
-- Yahoo spent $600,000 a 13 percent decrease $690,000, in 2015.
Here are 2016 third-quarter lobbying expenditures for three other telecommunications companies:
-- Sprint spent $574,424, a 19.5 percent decrease from $713,843 in 2015.
-- T-Mobile spent $2.17 million, a 58.4 percent increase from $1.37 million in 2015.
-- Verizon spent $2.18 million, a 12.1 percent decrease from $2.48 million in 2015.
Here are 2016 third-quarter lobbying expenditures for two cable companies:
-- Comcast spent $3.41 million, a 4.3 percent increase from $3.27 million in 2015.
-- Charter Communications spent $1.99 million, a 103 percent increase from $980,000 in 2015. Consumer Watchdog used to track Time Warner Cable's lobbying spending. The company spent $1.65 million in 2015 and $1.80 million in 2014. It has been acquired Charter Communications.
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SOURCE Consumer Watchdog