Marsh & McLennan Companies (MMC) has decided to end its political action committee (PAC) contributions to those lawmakers who objected to the certification of the electoral college vote.
MMC is the first known insurance industry player to take such a step in the wake of the riots. Banking groups JP Morgan Chase, Goldman Sachs and Citigroup in recent days have announced temporary suspensions of political donations.
The move follows a mob of Trump supporters on 6 January storming the US Capitol building as proceedings to certify the electoral college vote got underway.
Senators and representatives returned to their chambers that evening to certify the vote, with eight senators and 139 representatives voting to sustain one or both objections.
MMC’s PAC, which was set up 13 years ago, had contributed to nine of the lawmakers that objected. In the past the broking giant’s PAC has stopped contributing to lawmakers where there have been ethical challenges or where the broker has had philosophical differences with them.
The PAC has given on a bipartisan basis, with 52 percent of federal candidate contributions for the 2019-2020 period going to Democrats and 48 percent to Republicans.
MMC’s PAC raised about $392,000 in the 2019-2020 period. This is similar to some other industry PACs such as Chubb’s, which had contributions of about $310,000 in 2019-2020, but significantly smaller than association PACs such as the Council of Insurance Agents & Brokers and American Property Casualty Insurance Association (APCIA), which had contributions of $3.5mn and $1.3mn, respectively.
Some industry leaders have been swift to condemn the riots.
Chubb chairman and CEO Evan Greenberg said it was vital “elected leaders from both parties set an example through their respect and active support for the orderly transfer of power and their condemnation of false claims of election fraud”.
David Sampson, APCIA president and CEO, said he was “horrified and saddened” by the scenes of mob violence in Washington. He stated that insurers support the peaceful transition of power.
In the lead up to 6 January, some insurance leaders had also stressed the need to certify the electoral college vote.
For example, MMC president and CEO Dan Glaser was among over 170 business leaders signing a letter released by the non-profit Partnership for New York City urging Congress to accept Joe Biden’s win in the US presidential election, along with AIG’s Brian Duperreault, Travelers’ Alan Schnitzer and Swiss Re Americas’ Philip Ryan.
The riots resulted in five fatalities, including one police officer. In addition, a US Capitol Police officer who responded to the rioting has since committed suicide.