Obama Is Not Beholden to Big Corporations. He Is Beholden to the Executives of Big Corporations.


I have not been following the BP oil spill story closely enough to judge the Obama administration's response, let alone the motivation underlying it. Furthermore, Sarah Palin is such a loose-lipped dimwit and reflexive partisan that I can readily believe she was just pulling accusations out of thin air when she suggested that the government's response has been lackadaisical because the president is in bed with Big Oil (unlike the former governor of a state where every resident receives a personal petroleum payoff?). But the response from Media Matters for America still seems pretty lame. MMA, the media watchdog organization for Obama-loving Democrats, zeroes in on Palin's assertion that Obama is "the single largest recipient of BP's cash," hammering journalists (in particular, Agence France-Presse) for repeating this "misleading" claim.

MMA says this claim is misleading because the money—a total of $77,051 out of $3.5 million donated to candidates by BP personnel during the last two decades, according to the Center for Responsive Politics—came "entirely from individuals employed by BP, not the corporation itself." Since direct corporate donations to political campaigns are illegal, this is not exactly a revelation. The next time a Republican is accused of being excessively cozy with a major corporation, I'm sure MMA will pedantically respond that, in point of fact, Sen. Moneybags has never received a dime from that company, since all the donations came from its employees.