Lobbyists Spent $426 Million To Reap An Infrastructure Bonanza

Nearly 2,000 companies and other groups have engaged with Washington officials about infrastructure to shape the final deal

The Washington Post comments Massive Economic Packages Unleash Lobbying Bonanza in Washington.

Nearly 2,000 companies and organizations have lobbied Congress and the administration this year in an attempt to influence the contours of major new infrastructure spending, an effort that is sure to intensify now that the Senate is hoping to vote within days on their version of the $1 trillion public-works package.

The proposal — along with a still-forming second economic package valued at $3.5 trillion — carries high stakes for corporations that have long pined for infrastructure improvements and other federal spending that would be beneficial to their bottom lines.

The organizations working to shape the package — ranging from powerful trade associations representing agricultural and energy giants to small-time firms working for cities in Alabama and Kansas — mentioned either “infrastructure” or President Biden’s initial proposal, known as the American Jobs Plan, on their lobbying disclosure forms during the most recent quarter this year, according to an analysis from the Center for Responsive Politics, a nonprofit group that tracks money and influence in Washington.

Amazon, whose founder Jeff Bezos owns The Washington Post, spent nearly $10 million in the first six months of the year on a slew of lobbyists who worked on issues including “electric vehicle charging infrastructure” and “infrastructure investment legislation,” according to filings. The Global Infrastructure Investor Association, which represents financial firms like Goldman Sachs, Blackstone and Morgan Stanley, lobbied earlier this year on “public-private partnerships in financing state and federal infrastructure,” its disclosures show.

The RATE Coalition hired Forbes Tate Partners to lobby against corporate tax raises, a firm whose lobbyists include former aides to the Senate’s top tax-focused committee. The American Chemistry Council, which represents companies including 3M, Dow, Dupont and ExxonMobil, has taken particular aim at a portion of the infrastructure package that would raise the country’s so-called superfund tax.

As fruits of their efforts, the lobbyists produced a 2,701-page bill.

It’s important to understand that Congressmen do not write bills, lobbyists do. They are the only ones who understand what’s in those 2,701 pages.- READ MORE