Facebook's Political Action Committee Raises $170K In Q4

Facebook’s political action committee, known as fbPAC, is on very solid financial footing based on its first financial disclosure filed with the Federal Election Commission today.

What’s notable about the fbPAC filing is the amount of collecting versus contributing the report reveals.

In fact, fbPAC hasn’t made any contributions to political campaigns as of January 1, 2012. That might seem unusual since it’s a politically charged election year.

Yet the company has been increasingly engaged in politics and policy making on several fronts since the platform expanded its presence in Washington, D.C.

Earlier this month, we told you that Facebook’s lobbying expenditures for 2011 reached the $1 million mark.

As of January 1, 2012, fbPAC has cash on hand of $167,280.29. The PAC includes receipts — or donations — that amount to $170,009.95 for the period of October 1, 2011 through December 31, 2011.

The majority of receipts, $168,750.00, were received through employee contributions. We share a few of the 44 employee names that contributed to the PAC below.

The only disbursements fbPAC made were in the form of operating expenditures that total $2,729.66.

It’s a very strong first showing for a technology company PAC–perhaps an indication of an engaged and motivated group of employees. In comparison, Google’s first quarterly filing for its NetPAC reported $31,000 in 2006. Yahoo! reported $17,575 in the Yahoo! PAC’s first filing with the FEC in 2002.

The formation of fbPAC was announced in September, 2011.

As promised, here’s some of the Facebook executives who contributed $5,000, the maximum individual donation allowed under the law.

  • Mark Zuckerberg, chief executive officer;
  • Sheryl Sandberg, chief operating officer;
  • Mark Andreeson, director;
  • Erskine Bowles, director;
  • Elliot Schrage, vice president, corporate communications and public policy;
  • Joe Lockhart, vice president, corporate communications; and
  • Joel Kaplan, vice president, U.S. public policy.

Other employees gave $250 or less. A Facebook spokesperson shared the following statement with us:

fbPAC gives our employees a way to make their voice heard in the political process by supporting candidates who share our goals of promoting the value of innovation to our economy while giving people the power to share and make the world more open and connected.

As the 2012 election year rolls on, it will be interesting to see where the company wants its voice heard through the campaign contributions that are made. We don’t have that long to wait to find out — the next filing deadline is April 15, 2012.

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