Fortune 500 companies that invested millions of dollars in electing Republicans are emerging as the earliest beneficiaries of a government controlled by President Bush and the largest GOP House and Senate majority in a half century.
MBNA Corp., the credit card behemoth and fifth-largest contributor to Bush's two presidential campaigns, is among those on the verge of prevailing in an eight-year fight to curtail personal bankruptcies. Exxon Mobil Corp. and others are close to winning the right to drill for oil in Alaska's wildlife refuge, which they have tried to pass for better than a decade. Wal-Mart Stores Inc., another big contributor to Bush and the GOP, and other big companies recently won long-sought protections from class-action lawsuits.
Republicans have pursued such issues for much of the past decade, asserting that free market policies are the smartest way to grow the economy. But now it appears they finally have the legislative muscle to push some of their agenda through Congress and onto the desk of a president eager to sign pro-business measures into law. The chief reason is Bush's victory in 2004 and GOP gains in Congress, especially in the Senate, where much of corporate America's agenda has bogged down in recent years, according to Republicans and Democrats.
"These are not real high-profile, sexy issues like the war or Social Security, but these are issues that have huge economic consequences," said Charles R. Black Jr., a GOP lobbyist and one of the president's top fundraisers. "And there is more to come on that score."
The implication, of course, is that Bush's corporate supporters were buying favors. That's not how it works. You support the candidate who's most aligned with your interests, not because you can buy favors from that candidate but because you don't have to buy favors from that candidate.
As for Bush's "pro-business" bias, it's a pro-growth, pro-jobs bias. But liberals wouldn't understand that. It's too complex for their allegedly nuanced minds to grasp. They'd rather have welfare and crime.