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AT&T flexes political muscle in Sacramento

April 23, 2012 |  3:58 pm

Pebble Beach
Fewer companies have more clout in California politics than AT&T.

The telephone, cable and wireless giant –- one of the 12 largest corporations in the country -– has spent more money trying to influence lawmakers over the last several years than any other.

Shane Goldmacher and Anthony York tell the story of how the company builds and uses its considerable political muscle with state officials.

AT&T “forges relationships on the putting green, in luxury suites and in Capitol hallways,” employing an army of lobbyists, sponsoring million-dollar fundraisers at Pebble Beach and giving free tickets to Lady Gaga concerts or the World Series to lawmakers.

“It has spent more than $14,000 a day on political advocacy since 2005, when it merged with SBC into its current form…. No single corporation has spent as much trying to influence lawmakers as AT&T. At the same time, a tide of consumer protections has ebbed and the company has been unshackled from the watchful eye of state regulators.”

You can read the entire story here.

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AT&T wields enormous power in Sacramento

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