Feeds

Oracle plays campaign funding by the book

The best politicians money can buy

Boost IT visibility and business value

Four years after landing in hot water over for controversially funding US state politicians, Oracle is taking steps to ensure its executives stay squeaky-clean.

The company has admitted it is helping executive officers comply with reporting obligations under federal, state and local law over their personal donations to politicians.

Since late in its fiscal year 2006, which ended last May, Oracle has been "assisting with the preparation and submission of campaign contribution filings." Oracle is spending $1,000 per executive each year, the company said.

"The [Oracle] compensation committee believes there is a benefit to Oracle in ensuring that its executive officers comply with these reporting requirements given the potential cost of this program," Oracle told shareholders in its latest proxy filing.

With state and Senate elections looming this fall, the Center for Responsive Politics reports employees from Oracle have so far forked over $159,530.

Oracle is no stranger to the US political lobbying machine and the controversy that can ensue when mixing funding with business. Its political contributions came into question during 2001 and 2002 when the state of California awarded Oracle a $95m database contract after then governor Gray Davis's re-election campaign received a $25,000 donation from Oracle. Then state attorney general Bill Lockyer, who was probing the California deal, himself returned a $50,000 Oracle donation to avoid the appearance of a conflict of interest.

Oracle at the time justified contributions saying it was important for the Silicon Valley giant to participate in the state's political process. The company is not alone, though, when it comes to priming the US poltical pump.

During the last eight years companies across the tech sector have increased their contributions to politicians and officials' election campaigns, labor unions and other organizations whose job is to lobby Congress and federal agencies.

The computing and PC sector spent a combined total of $81m on lobbying during 2005. Microsoft spent $8.7m, IBM came second on $7.2m, Intel third on $4m, and Oracle was fourth on $2.9m according to the Center for Responsive Politics' web site, Opensecrets.org.

Telephone companies, who have been lobbying politicians locally and nationally to kill city-funded metropolitan WiFi networks, came second in terms of overall contributions, totaling $56m. Leading the pack was AT&T followed by Bell South, Verizon, SBC and then Sprint.®

Maximizing your infrastructure through virtualization

More from The Register

next story
BBC goes offline in MASSIVE COCKUP: Stephen Fry partly muzzled
Auntie tight-lipped as major outage rolls on
iPad? More like iFAD: We reveal why Apple fell into IBM's arms
But never fear fanbois, you're still lapping up iPhones, Macs
Stick a 4K in them: Super high-res TVs are DONE
4,000 pixels is niche now... Don't say we didn't warn you
Philip K Dick 'Nazi alternate reality' story to be made into TV series
Amazon Studios, Ridley Scott firm to produce The Man in the High Castle
Sonos AXES support for Apple's iOS4 and 5
Want to use your iThing? You can't - it's too old
There's NOTHING on TV in Europe – American video DOMINATES
Even France's mega subsidies don't stop US content onslaught
You! Pirate! Stop pirating, or we shall admonish you politely. Repeatedly, if necessary
And we shall go about telling people you smell. No, not really
Too many IT conferences to cover? MICROSOFT to the RESCUE!
Yet more word of cuts emerges from Redmond
Joe Average isn't worth $10 a year to Mark Zuckerberg
The Social Network deflates the PC resurgence with mobile-only usage prediction
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
Application security programs and practises
Follow a few strategies and your organization can gain the full benefits of open source and the cloud without compromising the security of your applications.
How modern custom applications can spur business growth
Learn how to create, deploy and manage custom applications without consuming or expanding the need for scarce, expensive IT resources.
Securing Web Applications Made Simple and Scalable
Learn how automated security testing can provide a simple and scalable way to protect your web applications.