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Google, Facebook still spending millions on lobbying in D.C.

October 23, 2012|By Jessica Guynn
  • People attend a workshop, "New York Get Your Business Online," at Google offices in New York.
People attend a workshop, "New York Get Your Business Online,"… (Mark Lenninhan / Associated…)

Companies that peddle online ads still spent a record amount trying to peddle influence in Washington even when Congress was gridlocked and when many lawmakers were on recess.

So far in 2012, Google has spent $13.1 million, according to filings. The search giant is staring down a possible antitrust case from the Federal Trade Commission. It spent a record $5.4 million in the first quarter, then nearly $4.4 million in the second. In the third quarter ending in September, it shelled out $4.2 million (that's a 76% jump from the year-ago quarter when it spent nearly $ 2.4 million). The search giant has already eclipsed its spending in 2011, which was $9.7 million.

Google was not alone in flexing its financial muscle in Washington.

Facebook spent more in the third quarter than in any lobbying quarter in its history. It shelled out just shy of $1 million. That's more than double what it spent a year ago.

The giant social network spent $980,000 on lobbying compared with $360,000 in the third quarter a year ago. Last quarter Facebook also ramped up spending, shelling out $960,000.

So far this year Facebook has spent nearly $2.6 million on lobbying. That's already nearly double the $1.3 million it spent in all of 2011 with one quarter still to go.

Other tech giants aren't spending nearly as much. Apple shelled out $460,000. spent $550,000. And Microsoft spent nearly $1.9 million.


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