New Report Card Evaluates Congressional Actions for Corporate Accountability


Washington, DC (December 19, 2013)

- Congress had a miserable record on
resisting corporate influence in 2012, according to a new Congressional
Report Card
released today. The 2012 Corporate Accountability Coalition
Report Card tracks Congressional action related to corporate
accountability, transparency, and responsible business during the second
year of the 112th Congress.

Recent polls have shown that the
vast majority of Americans are concerned about the influence large
corporations exercise over U.S. politics and believe that corporations
mistreat their customers and other stakeholders in the interests of
maximizing profit.  The Corporate Accountability Coalition (CAC) is a
response to these concerns: an alliance of organizations that advocate
for increased corporate accountability and checks on corporate abuse of
power.  CAC's Report Card includes some alarming new findings, including
the discovery that of the very few actions proposed in the last
Congress to promote responsible business practices, most never even
received a vote. 

"In an age where our courts hand down
decisions on an almost daily basis that increase corporate power at the
expense of ordinary people, our legislature must hold the line and set a
higher standard in corporate accountability," said Katie Redford,
Director and Co-Founder of CAC member EarthRights International. Only 2
Representatives and 4 Senators scored higher than 87%, highlighting how,
even as Americans grow increasingly wary of the accumulation of
corporate power, Congress is not acting to address the problem. Those
members with the highest scores were former Rep. Fortney "Pete" Stark
(D-CA) and Rep. Keith Ellison (D-MN) in the House and Sen. Richard
Blumenthal (D-CT), Sen. Al Franken (D-MN), Sen. Robert Menendez (D-NJ),
and Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) in the Senate.

Meanwhile, 12
Representatives and 25 Senators had a score of zero. "This report card
shows that most Members of Congress continue their weak-kneed
subservience to the giant corporations that dominate our economy and
politics," said Gary Ruskin, director of the Center for Corporate
Policy.

About the Report Card

The Corporate
Accountability Coalition Report Card
represents an attempt to educate
the public about Congress's record in protecting people from the
unchecked growth of corporate influence.

The Report Card presents
information on whether Members of Congress have supported measures that
either strengthen or weaken limits on corporate conduct, regulate or
give free rein to corporations when they attempt to go beyond those
limits, and hold corporations accountable or provide impunity when they
disregard those limits. As very few proposed bills went to a vote,
legislators were scored on their co-sponsorship of bills related to
corporate accountability, transparency, and responsible business, as
well as other actions open to all Members of Congress. The Report Card
does not endorse or oppose any candidate for election.

"The
intent of this report card is to track how Congress votes on what we
believe are reasonable limits on corporate power," emphasized Pratap
Chatterjee, executive director of CorpWatch. "The Corporate
Accountability Coalition believes that such limits will help level the
playing field and make it harder for corporations who benefit from
wrongdoing."

CAC expects to release a second scorecard evaluating congressional actions in 2013, sometime next year.

Contact:

Marco Simons, Phone: 202-466-5188 x103; Email: marco@earthrights.org

Gary Ruskin, Phone: 202-387-8030; Email: ruskin@corporatepolicy.org

About the Corporate Accountability Coalition


The Corporate Accountability Coalition is a collaboration of the Center for Corporate Policy, Corporate Accountability International, CorpWatch, EarthRights International, and the Institute for Policy Studies.



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