United States Chamber of Commerce
|United States industry|
|Method||Political lobbying, Public relations|
|Tom J. Donohue, President|
|Slogan||Fighting for your business|
Politically, the Chamber is generally considered to be a  All branches, corporations, and members of the Chamber pay dues; the question is how they divide the money for expenses in national campaigns.
The truth of these allegations is unknown, as neither the Chamber nor its detractors can provide any concrete evidence to support or refute the allegations. In reference to the matter, Tom Donohue wrote his council and members on October 12, 2010. He stated, "Let me be clear. The Chamber does not use any foreign money to fund voter education activities—period. We have strict financial controls in place to ensure this. The funds we receive from American Chambers of Commerce abroad, bilateral business councils, and non-U.S. based global companies represent a small fraction of our more than $200 million annual revenues. Under our accounting system, these revenues are never used to support any political activities. We are in full compliance with all laws and regulations." Organizations Think Progress, and People for the American Way rallied against the Chamber at the Justice Department to start an injunction for a criminal investigation. The Chamber is not required to produce fundraising records.
President Barack Obama and other legislators asked the IRS and Federal Elections Commission to ensure that the foreign funds that the Chamber receives are not used for political activities. Obama criticized the Chamber for not disclosing its contributors. The Chamber has responded that "No foreign money is used to fund political activities."  After the election, the Chamber reiterated the nature of Obama's policy dictated action from the Chamber, however the conflict would not be made "personal".
In addition to the expenditures from the Chamber's own funds, in 2010 its political action committee gave $29,000 (89 percent) to Republican candidates and $3,500 (11 percent) to Democratic candidates. The Chamber's PAC received a total of 76 donations from individual donors ($200 or more donation) totaling $79,852 in 2007-2008, or an average of $1050 per donation, and three donations per month.
In 2011, the Chamber hosted a "GOP Holiday Party" honoring the Republican National Committee.
Despite more than $33 million spent supporting candidates in the 2012 Congressional races, Chamber-backed candidates lost 36 out of the 50 elections in which the Chamber participated.
In late 2013 the Chamber announced it would distribute campaign contributions in "10s" of Republican primary elections to oppose the Tea Party movement and create a "more governable Republican party." In early 2014 Tom Donohue clarified that the push would be to elect "pro-business" members of Congress "who favor trade, energy development and immigration reform".
- Tom J. Donohue - President and CEO
- Shannon DiBari - Chief Operating Officer, Senior Vice President, and Chief Administrative Officer
- Myron Brillant - Executive Vice President and Head of International
- Lily Fu Claffee - Senior Vice President, Chief Legal Officer, and General Counsel; Executive Vice President, U.S. Chamber Litigation Center
- Suzanne Clark - Executive Vice President, U.S. Chamber of Commerce
- Thomas Collamore - Senior Vice President, Communications and Strategy and Counselor to the President
- Rob Engstrom - Senior Vice President, Political Affairs & Federation Relations and National Political Director
- Amanda Engstrom - Senior Vice President and Chief of Staff; Senior Vice President, U.S. Chamber Center for Capital Markets Competitiveness; Acting President, Center for Advanced Technology and Innovation
In April 2009, the Chamber began an ad campaign against the proposed
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- Tankersley, Jim (25 August 2009). "U.S. Chamber of Commerce seeks trial on global warming".
- Gardner, Timothy (5 October 2009). "Apple, citing climate, tells U.S. Chamber iQuit".
- Mears, Bill (26 May 2011). "Supreme Court backs Arizona immigration law that punishes businesses".
- Independent Business Advocates Condemn U.S. Supreme Court's Decision in Citizens United.
- Opensecrets.org ranking page for 2013
- "President Barack Obama says foreign funds received by the US Chamber may be helping to fund attack ads". Politifact, St. Petersburg Times. October 11, 2010.
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- About AmCham China
- Murray, Matthew (November 12, 2010). "Chamber Watch: Business Group ‘Central’ to GOP Gains".
- "Chamber of Commerce under fire for foreign cash". Politico.com.
- Waters, Clay (2010-10-22). "Lead Story Goes After Fundraising of Obama Foe, the Chamber of Commerce | Media Research Center". Mrc.org. Retrieved 2012-04-05.
- Fang, Lee (2010-10-13). "Exclusive: Chamber Receives At Least $885,000 From Over 80 Foreign Companies In Disclosed Donations Alone". ThinkProgress. Retrieved 2012-04-05.
- "Vote 2010: Is Foreign Money Behind U.S. Chamber of Commerce Ads? - ABC News". Abcnews.go.com. 2010-10-11. Retrieved 2012-04-05.
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- Graves, Lucia (7 October 2010). "Watchdog Groups Rally Outside Chamber Of Commerce, As Calls For A Justice Department Investigation Mount". Huffington Post.
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- Needham, Vicki (September 13, 2013). "Top business groups vow more involvement in primaries".
- Wingfield, Brian; Bykowicz, Julie (8 January 2014). "Big Business Doubles Down on GOP Civil War With Tea Party". www.bloomberg.com (Bloomberg L.P.). Retrieved 8 January 2014.
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- Who's holding us back? Full report Greenpeace November 23, 2011
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- Salvail, Andre (24 April 2012). "Aspen chamber to cut ties with national organization". The Aspen Times. Retrieved 29 December 2012.
- Kasperowicz, Pete. "GOP lawmaker returns award to protest Chamber of Commerce’s immigration policy". The Blaze.
- O'Connor, Patrick (2014-12-26). "U.S. Chamber of Commerce Pushes Priorities in Congress". The Wall Street Journal.
- Ho, Catherine (2014-01-08). "U.S. Chamber to ‘pull out all stops’ to pass immigration reform". Washington Post. Retrieved 7 May 2015.
- "Granting Corporations Bill of Rights Protections Is Not "Pro-business". AMIBA. Retrieved 2015-06-30.
- Saladoff, S. (Director). (2011). Hot Coffee [Motion picture]. Docurama Films
- Advocacy group
- American Green Chamber of Commerce
- Global Intellectual Property Center
- Lobbying in the United States
- National Federation of Independent Business
- U.S. Women's Chamber of Commerce
- United States Hispanic Chamber of Commerce
- Americans for Transportation Mobility
- Business Civic Leadership Center
- Center for Capital Markets Competitiveness
- Center for International Private Enterprise
- Essential Worker Immigration Coalition
- Institute for 21st Century Energy
- Institute for a Competitive Workforce
- Institute for Legal Reform
- National Chamber Litigation Center
- U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation (previously the National Chamber Foundation)
Several organization have attacked the Chamber for its advocacy, including Chamber Watch (a campaign of Public Citizen). Advocates for independent business, like the American Independent Business Alliance (AMIBA) and "green businesses," like the American Sustainable Business Council, have fought the Chamber on multiple issues. Among major divisions between the Chamber and these business advocates is allowing corporations to engage in electioneering. Oliver E. Diaz says one example of this was when the Chamber spent $1,000,000+ to elect judicial candidate Keith Starrett and fund negative campaign ads against judicial candidate Oliver E. Diaz. 
Opposition to Chamber
The Chamber of Commerce has also come under attack by conservatives and others for its support of amnesty for illegal immigrants. In 2014, Tom Donohue stated the Chamber will "pull out all stops" for the passage of immigration reform in Congress. According to the Washington Post, Donohue did not offer specifics with regard to provisions or bills on the matter, speaking generally about the impact immigration would have on the U.S. economy.
The Chamber threatened to sue the Toyota stated that it would not leave the Chamber. The Aspen Chamber Resort Association of Aspen, Colorado left the U.S. Chamber because of its views on climate change, in light of how climate change could hurt Aspen's winter tourism industry.
The climate campaign organisation 350.org estimates that 94% of US Chamber of Commerce electoral contributions went to candidates denying the scientific consensus on climate change.
Some in the business community have criticized the Chamber's approach to public issues as overly aggressive. Hilary Rosen, former CEO of the Recording Industry Association of America added, "Their aggressive ways are out of step with a new generation of business leadership who are looking for more cooperative relationship with Washington."
In December 2009, activist group Velvet Revolution, under the name StopTheChamber, posted a $200,000 reward for "information leading to the arrest and conviction of Chamber of Commerce CEO Tom Donahue."
In November 2009, the Chamber was reported to be seeking to spend $50,000 to hire a "respected economist" to produce a study that could be used to portray health-care legislation as a job killer and threat to the nation's economy.
 In a front-page article titled "Large Donations Aid U.S. Chamber in Election Drive",  The Chamber's spending out of its general funds was criticized as illegal under campaign finance laws. During the 2010 campaign cycle, the Chamber spent $32 million, 93 percent of which was to help Republican candidates.
In the 2008 election cycle, aggressive ads paid for by the USCC attacked a number of Democratic congressional candidates (such as Minnesota's DFL Senate candidate Al Franken) and supported a number of Republican candidates including John Sununu, Gordon Smith, Roger Wicker, Saxby Chambliss and Elizabeth Dole.
AmCham China, with members comprise more than 2,600 individuals from over 1,200 companies, is said to be the largest affiliate outside of United States.
As of October 2010, the Chamber had a worldwide network of 115 American Chamber of Commerce affiliates located in 108 countries. The US Chamber says that a relative handful of the Chamber's 300,000 members are "non-U.S.-based (foreign) companies." It claims that, "No foreign money is used to fund political activities." A US Chamber executive has said that the organization has had "foreign multinationals" (foreign companies) as members for "over a century, many for decades." The US Chamber states that it receives approximately $100,000 annually in membership dues from its foreign affiliates, out of an annual budget of $200 million.
|Year||US Cham. Rank||US Cham. Spending||Next Highest Spender||Next Highest Amount|
|2013||1||$74,470,000||National Assn of Realtors||$38,584,580|
|2012||1||$136,300,000||National Assn of Realtors||$41,464,580|
|2007||1||$53,082,500||Pharmaceutical Rsrch & Mfrs of America||$22,733,400|
|2004||1||$53,380,000||American Medical Assn||$18,820,000|
The Chamber has emerged as the largest National Assn of Realtors, at $38.5 million.
- Argued against mandatory immigration status checks by employers in Arizona including in a Supreme Court case.
- Filed an amicus brief to the U.S. Supreme Court in Citizens United v FEC. Its position is opposed by some advocates for independent businesses.
- Actively lobbies against anti-tobacco policies implemented in other countries. In particular, it opposes attempts to carve out tobacco from the Investor-state dispute settlement mechanism negotiated under the Trans-Pacific Partnership agreement.
- Opposed to using the government shutdown and debt ceiling limit as negotiating tactics.
- Supported the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA).
- Support for business globalization, free trade, and offshoring.
- Qualified opposition to financial regulation.
- Opposes the DISCLOSE Act, which aims to limit foreign influence on U.S. elections.
- Opposed the Affordable Health Care for America Act.
- Opposes action on climate change. The Chamber believes that climate change is real, but disputes the scientific consensus that warming mostly results from human activity and questions whether anything can be done to reduce climate change. The Chamber emphasizes the economic impact of climate decisions.
- Supported the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009.
Since a 1971 internal memo by Lewis Powell advocating a more active role in cases before United States Supreme Court, the Chamber has found increasing success in litigation. Under the Burger and Rehnquist Courts the Chamber was on the prevailing side 43% and 56% of the time, respectively, but under the Roberts Court, the Chamber's success rate rose to 68% as of 21 June 2012.
In late 2011 it was revealed that the Chamber's computer system was breached from November 2009 to May 2010 by Chinese hackers. The purpose of the breach appeared to be gain information related to the Chamber's lobbying regarding Asian trade policy.
Although all chambers can work with all levels of government, they tend to concentrate their efforts on specific levels: Local chambers of commerce tend to focus on local issues, state chambers on state issues, and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce focuses on national issues at the federal government level. They also work closely with a number of other youth organizations in the country about the value and role of business in our society today. 
.Daniel Webster The Washington, D.C., headquarters of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce occupies land that was formerly the home of  In 1993, the Chamber lost several members over its support for
The U.S. Chamber of Commerce's own history of itself describes it as originating from an April 22, 1912, meeting of delegates. The Chamber was created by President Taft as a counterbalance to the labor movement of the time.
- History 1
Positions taken 2
- Legislation 2.1
- Court Cases 2.2
- Lobbying expenditures 3
- International network 4
- Electoral activities 5
- Current Leadership 6
- Climate Change 7.1
- Immigration Reform 7.2
- Opposition to Chamber 8
- Affiliate organizations 9
- See also 10
- References 11
- Further reading 12
- External links 13