Policy

AT&T Leads Q3's Lobbying Spend

Consumer Watchdog finds Comcast's output up, Charter's down 10/23/2017 2:35 PM Eastern

AT&T barely outpaced Google to be the third quarter's top spender on lobbying, shelling out $4.13 million, up 8% from Q3 2016, according to Consumer Watchdog's tracking of 16 telecom/technology companies.

The telco is trying to shepherd its Time Warner merger through Washington, though it has just extended the close on that deal as the Justice Department continues to vet it; the FCC is not separately reviewing the merger.

Google was a close second behind AT&T, spending $4.17 million on lobbying, up 9% from Q3 2016.

On the cable side, Comcast spent $3.51 million, up 3%, while Charter spent $1.88 million, down 6%. Among technology companies, several saw double-digit percentage increases in lobbying spend for the quarter.

Amazon spending was way up, increasing 26% year-over-year to $3.41 million, almost triple what it spent in 2013. Facebook spending was $2.85 million, up 30% over Q3 2016, and Apple spent $1.86 million, up a whopping 74% from last year. In contrast, Twitter's spending was tweet-sized at only $120,000, down 29%.

Consumer Watchdog based its numbers on filings with the House of Representatives that were due last week.

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