New GOP Budget Proposal Targets Federal Employee Unions, a Strong Source of Funding for Democrats

Jan. 21, 2011 - According to The Washington Post, "a series of measures proposed Thursday by House conservatives to shrink the federal deficit included several that would fall heavily on the federal workforce." The proposal fulfills a campaign promise to cut non-defense spending, an industry that is more favorable to Republican lawmakers.

A look at campaign contributions to current members of Congress shows that federal employee unions heavily favored Democrat lawmakers when handing out campaign contributions. Democrats from both chambers combined have enjoyed a healthy 4-to-1 margin over their Republican counterparts since 2001.

Total Contributions from Federal Employee Unions to Current Members of Congress

All Contributions since 2001  
  Democrat Independent
Republican Total Percentage
House  $3,618,528  $-  $871,000  $4,489,528 76%
Senate  $1,220,500 $35,000 $168,900 $1,424,400 24%
Total $4,839,028 $35,000 $1,039,900 $5,913,928  
Percentage 82% 1% 18%    
 
Contributions in 2010 Election Cycle only 
  Democrat Independent Republican Total Percentage
House $870,893 $- $186,500 $1,057,393 80%
Senate $217,650 $1,000 $49,000 $267,650 20%
Total $1,088,543 $1,000 $235,500 $1,325,043  
Percentage 82% ~0% 18%    
           

A look at the contributions associated with the defense industry in the same time periods shows more parity between the parties, however Republicans enjoy considerably more in funding from defense contractors than from the federal employee unions.

Total Contributions from Defense Industry to Current Members of Congress 
 
All Contributions since 2001  
  Democrat Independent Republican Total Percentage
House $14,618,116 $- $16,223,915 $30,842,031 68%
Senate $6,589,952 $393,700 $7,304,571 $14,288,223 32%
Total $21,208,068 $393,700 $23,528,486 $45,130,254  
Percentage 47% 1% 52%    
 
Contributions in 2010 Election Cycle Only 
  Democrat Independent Republican Total Percentage
House $5,106,809 $- $5,406,950 $10,513,759 76%
Senate $1,594,102 $49,150 $1,697,589 $3,340,841 24%
Total $6,700,911 $49,150 $7,104,539 $13,854,600  
Percentage 48% 0% 51%    
           

Monetary and non-monetary contributions to candidate campaign committees of legislators serving in the 112th Congress. Contribution figures span from Jan. 1, 2001 - Nov 22, 2010. Contributions data provided by the Center for Responsive Politics (OpenSecrets.org)

About MapLight: MapLight is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit, nonpartisan research organization that reveals money's influence on politics. If our work has been helpful to you, please consider supporting us.