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New Report Exposes Corporate Push to Derail Popular, Progressive Provisions in $3.5T Budget Package

Johanna Kichton, j.kichton@peoplesaction.org, 202.660.0605

Colleen A. Roache, croache@demos.org, 862.400.5099

WASHINGTON, D.C.—People’s Action and Dēmos today unveiled an incriminating report that reveals the depths of corporate sabotage of President Biden’s Build Back Better agenda. Just 20 corporations or groups representing them have spent more than $201 million in lobbying so far this year, much of which was aimed at derailing important investments and reforms demanded by the voters that put Biden and the Democratic majority in office in 2020. 

Behind the Curtain: The Corporate Plot to Upend Democracy highlights corporations including Anthem, JPMorgan Chase, FedEx, Wal-Mart, Exxon, Amazon, Pfizer, and Blue Cross Blue Shield. The report’s release coincides with a National Day of Action where People’s Action member organizations around the country are holding rallies targeting these same corporate entities and the trade associations that represent them like the Chamber of Commerce and the National Realtors Association.

“We pulled the curtain back on corporate America to find they were trying to put Congress in a headlock,” People’s Action Campaigns Director Sondra Youdelman said. “We’re proud to work with Dēmos to expose their desperate attempts to consolidate power. Now, Congress needs to do its job, fight these bullies, and pass a budget package for the people.”

“While everyday people are calling on Congress to put people first and safeguard their basic rights to housing, health care and a clean environment, corporations are prioritizing profits and working hard to preserve an inequitable status quo,” said Dēmos Senior Policy Analyst Daniella Zessoules. “As we’ve witnessed throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, this greed hits Black, brown, and low-income people hardest. Dēmos is joining People’s Action in shining a light on this injustice and demanding that lawmakers take a stand on behalf of the people.”

The report, Behind the Curtain: The Corporate Plot to Upend Democracy, focuses on six key issues areas in which corporations are working to derail critical provisions in the $3.5T budget package:

  • increasing taxes for corporations and the ultra-rich;
  • lowering drug prices;
  • providing affordable healthcare;
  • investing in public and affordable housing;
  • tackling climate change; and
  • providing a pathway to citizenship for undocumented people.

People’s Action’s grassroots member leaders are taking action today against the following corporations:

  • Greater Des Moines Partnership in Iowa
  • FedEx in West Virginia
  • Anthem in Indiana
  • Blue Cross Blue Shield Anthem in New Hampshire
  • Blue Cross Blue Shield in Illinois
  • Ajax Pavement Industries: Flint Asphalt Plant in Michigan (action was yesterday)
  • Amazon in Colorado
  • Home Depot in New York
  • National Realtors Association in Delaware and New York
  • PhRMA in Idaho
  • JPMorgan in New York (action was yesterday)

The full text of the report may be found here. Statements from grassroots voices may be found here. Photos from the direct actions across the country may be found here, with more being added.

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People’s Action is a national network of 40 state and local grassroots, power-building organizations in 30 states, united in fighting for justice. We operate the largest progressive rural organizing project in the country. People’s Action and its member organizations coordinated one of the biggest distributed organizing programs in rural areas this past election season.

Dēmos is a think tank that powers the movement for a just, inclusive, multiracial democracy. Through cutting-edge policy research, inspiring litigation, and deep relationships with grassroots organizations, Dēmos champions solutions that will create a democracy and economy rooted in racial equity.

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Press Contact
Johanna Kichton

(202) 660-0605

About People’s Action

People’s Action is a national network of 38 state and local grassroots, power-building organizations united in fighting for justice. Our organization recently released a vision for a national Homes Guarantee that has already prompted major legislation from champions including U.S. Reps. Ilhan Omar, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, and Rashida Tlaib. We operate the largest progressive rural organizing project in the country. Prior to endorsing Sen. Bernie Sanders for president, we completed a national forum series that The Nation called “the most in-depth, people-powered forum” of the 2020 cycle.”

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