By Rebecca Leber posted from ThinkProgress Economy on Apr 17, 2012 at 8:20 pm
Two-thirds of the largest 200 U.S. corporations lobbied on at least one tax bill between 2007 and 2010, and here’s why: the majority of them ended up paying lower taxes in 2010.
The eight major corporations that spent the most on lobbying, for a total $540 million, all saw their tax rates decrease. According to a Sunlight Foundation report, the odds that those companies saw lower rates merely by chance is less than 1 in 100. The odds that six of those corporations paid seven percentage points less is even lower, at only 1 in 100,000.
Instead, the reduction was likely a result of their presence in Washington, lobbying for tax giveaways.
These companies are notorious for tax dodging, like ExxonMobil, which spent the most on lobbying and paid $565 million less in taxes. AT&T received the greatest return on lobbying, paying $7.3 billion less. Both of these companies spent even more on lobbying in 2011, with Exxon spending up by $300,000 and AT&T’s up $4,834,922. Exxon’s 2011 tax rate decreased from 17.6 to 13 percent in 2011.