Net Neutrality and Small Cell Towers: How Much Did Politicians Receive From Big Wireless and Big Cable?

By B.N. Frank

In September, Activist Post published an article about donations from The Telecom Industry (aka Big Wireless) and The Cable Industry (Big Cable): “Your Elected Officials Received How Much From AT&T, Verizon, and Comcast?

We referenced information provided in 2017 The Verge article:  “Congress took $101 million in donations from the ISP industry — here’s how much your lawmaker got.”

This chart shows lifetime contributions from the telecommunications industry to sitting members of Congress and their leadership PACs, between 1989 and 2017, consolidated by party

Data compiled and provided to The Verge by The Center For Responsive Politics (www.opensecrets.org). Figures represent contributions to members and their leadership PACs, made by their individual members or employees or owners, and those individuals’ immediate families. Contributors include Comcast, Cox Enterprises, AT&T, Verizon Communications, CenturyLink, T-Mobile USA, DISH Network, Motorola Solutions, CTIA, Quotidian Gallery Corp, SoftBank Corp, Level 3 Communications, American Cable Association, Tectus Corp, Transglobal Technologies, US Cellular, Cablevision Systems, Mada Communications, Motorola Inc, Intelsat Holdings, NCTA (The Internet & Television Association), NTCA (Rural Broadband Association), US Telecom Association, Granite Telecommunications, Telapex Inc, Windstream Communications, IDT Corp, Eatel, Transtelco, Atlantic Tele-Network, GCI, Telephone & Data Systems Inc, Cincinnati Bell, and Zayo Group.

In 2014, Gizmodo published an article about how Big Wireless and Big Cable donated $8 million to the 2014 election and reelection campaigns of officials in the Senate Subcommittee on Communications, Technology, and the Internet.  These are the folks who are supposed to be making sure that the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) does their job protecting the public by regulating these industries.  Hilarious, right?

How Much Money Big Cable Gave the Politicians Who Oversee the Internet

Democrats and Republicans alike received over $8 million from the four major telecom companies and their trade group in the 2014 election alone. For some context, the top five pharmaceutical groups spent only half as much in the same cycle.

It’s no big surprise that corporations throw their monetary weight around. But it is especially worrying when the FCC is already cozy with the very industry it’s supposed to regulate. Who, in turn, is supposed to make sure the FCC does its job? Why, that’s your elected officials of the Senate Subcommittee on Communications, Technology, and the Internet and the House Subcommittee on Communications and Technology—almost all of whom have received campaign funds from cable giants.

We’ve collected all the campaign contributions to these politicians from Comcast, Time Warner Cable, Verizon, AT&T, and their trade group the National Cable and Telecommunications Association (NCTA). These are megacorporations with many political interests—including piracy, taxes, privacy, and spectrum allocation to name just a few—so their donations reach a wider pool than just these subcommittee members. But it’s hard not to notice patterns, such as the trade group’s near-consistent contribution of $10,000 to almost every Republican member of the House subcommittee.

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Note on methodology: Since senators are elected every six years, the Senate chart includes data from 2010, 2012, and 2014 to account for campaign contributions to every member. The House chart includes only the 2014 elections. All data comes from FEC documents collected by the Center for Responsive Politics.

So why should any of this matter to you?  You may not even be aware that state and federal legislation has been passed to install 4G and 5G small cell towers and infrastructure above ground and below all over the country – including in front of homes – for the “Race for 5G” and “Smart Cities.”

Recent news reports say that President Trump not only endorses 5G – he loves it despite the fact that an increasing number of scientists, doctors and other Americans do not.  Insurance companies don’t seem to love wireless radiation either as they don’t cover exposure risk anymore.

Decades of research as well as recent U.S. research results have already determined that exposure to all sources of cell phone and wireless WiFi radiation is definitely harmful to people, animals, and the environment.  How harmful it is will be different for every living being.  Research has already determined it’s not just cancer risk.

If any of this bothers you, please contact one of the following organizations ASAP:


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