Can you put a price on your loyalty to your country? U.S. Chamber of Commerce board member Pfizer apparently can. Sitting upon $144 billion of deferred profits piling up overseas, the pharmaceutical giant has re-characterized its takeover of a smaller Irish rival as a “takeover” by the Irish firm of the much larger Pfizer. The benefit? Dodging $42 billion in taxes, roughly a quarter of the company’s stock market value. The Chamber claims to represent America’s small businesses. But in reality, it represents elite Fortune 100 companies—many of whom aren’t even based in the U.S. anymore.
The U.S. Chamber of Commerce is the largest special interest spender in the United States, with over $120 million on lobbying in 2014 alone. The lobbying campaigns waged by the U.S. Chamber influences legislation impacting millions of hard-working Americans every year for the benefit of the corporations behind the scenes of its initiatives. With the gaining popularity and huge financial incentives to shareholders for tax inversions, how long before the majority of these U.S. Chamber members pulling its strings are no longer from the United States?
At the same time the U.S. Chamber of Commerce is pushing legislation in states across the nation that would close the doors of legal funding providers—all U.S.-based small businesses with less than 150 employees—that pay taxes and employ people in your communities. These closures would mean limited options for everyday people fighting to get fair settlements from insurance companies after an accident.
Where is the U.S. in the U.S. Chamber of Commerce these days? Where’s its commitment to small businesses? Clearly patriotism and principles take a back seat to profit.
For more fact checking on who the U.S. Chamber of Commerce represents, see http://www.motherjones.com/politics/2010/01/fact-checking-chamber-commerce-tom-donohue