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June 10, 2010
8:34 AM

CONTACT: Center for Public Integrity (CPI)

Steve Carpinelli (202) 481-1225" target="_blank">Randy Barrett (202) 481-1256

Who Bankrolls Congress?

Series Reveals 8 out of 10 Nancy Pelosi Top Backers Are Labor Union Political Action Committees

WASHINGTON - June 10 - A prominent trial lawyer, his graphic-designer wife, an IBM heiress turned healing-touch practitioner, a land developer, and a savings and loan magnate are the top five individual donors to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, while eight labor unions, the National Association of Realtors, and JPMorgan Chase & Co. lead all political action committee contributors to the California Democrat.

These are among the findings in the fourth installment of the Center for Public Integrity's Who Bankrolls Congress? investigation, a comprehensive look at the top donors to Washington's most powerful lawmakers and their interests - not just recently, but over the entire course of these politicians' careers. Through analysis of CQ MoneyLine records on contributions to Pelosi's campaign committee and leadership PACs, the Center calculated the ten top PAC donors and five top individual contributors to Pelosi.

Today's report on Pelosi notes that her top individual donor is John W. Keker, a San Francisco-based trial lawyer. Keker was chief prosecutor of Marine Lt. Col. Oliver North for his role in the Iran-Contra scandal, and has represented clients ranging from Enron Corp.'s disgraced chief financial officer Andrew Fastow to Google Inc.  His graphic designer wife, Christina Day Keker, ranked second.

Pelosi's top PAC supporters include the Brotherhood of Maintenance of Way Employees - IBT, the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees, the National Association of Realtors the National Education Association, and United Auto Workers.

The eight labor unions among Pelosi's top ten have benefited from her presence in Congress.  The AFL-CIO's scorecards indicate 100 percent support from Pelosi for their legislative priorities in 2008 and 2009, and a 95 percent lifetime score for the speaker. Those labor ties have not endeared her to the business community. The U.S. Chamber of Commerce gives Pelosi just a 26 percent lifetime score. The first three stories of the four-part series looked at the ten top PAC contributors and five top individual donors to Sen. Harry Reid, Sen. Mitch McConnell, and House Minority Leader John Boehner and were released earlier this week.

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