The American Petroleum Institute, which advocates for the oil and gas industry, gave $25,500 to Americans for Prosperity, IRS disclosures show. Americans for Prosperity, based in Arlington, Virginia, spent more than $1.2 million in 2010 to help elect Republicans to Congress, according to FEC records.
The petroleum institute also gave $25,000 to the Alexandria, Virginia-based 60 Plus Association, which favors privatizing Social Security and spent more than $7 million in 2010 in support of Republicans, IRS and FEC records show.
Of course, Republicans picked up seats in both the House and Senate in 2010, when spending from these groups favored Republicans 10-to-1.
Groups like Chevron have seen billions in returns for their 2010 contributions. Chevron’s profits jumped 23.3 percent since 2010, and the company earned $3 million every hour last year. However, the company only paid an effective 19 percent income tax in 2011. Exxon, the most profitable oil company, paid a lowly 13 percent.
In 2012, undisclosed donations will play an even larger role, since interest group spending is up 1600 percent from the 2008 cycle.