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Facebook And Google Spent Record Amounts On D.C. Lobbying In Q3 2011

by Leena Rao, TechCrunch

Each quarter, Facebook and Google continue to spend more and more on lobbying efforts in Washington D.C. As evidenced by the most recent disclosure reports filed in the U.S. Senate’s lobbying database, both of the companies hit all time highs in terms of lobbying dollars.

Google’s lobbying spend hit an all-time high again this quarter, with spending coming in at $2.38 million, nearly doubling its spend from the same period a year ago. Last quarter, Googlespent $2.08 million on lawmakers. The search giant spent a total of $5.2 million in lobbying last year, and with this quarter’s tally has already passed last year’s spend with $5.8 million in the first three quarters of 2011.

This past quarter, Google’s lobbying strategy focused on patent reform, data privacy, The American Jobs Act, freedom of expression and intellectual property in international trade agreements, online advertising regulation, intellectual property and trademark issues, cyber security and online privacy, renewable energy, freedom of expression and censorship, “openness and competition in the online services market,” cloud computing, tax reform, free trade, and broadband access.

Former CEO and current Google Executive Chairman Eric Schmidt has been spending more time in the Beltway, helping with government relations, and with the anti-trust probe. Schmidt actually testified before Congress in September.

Patents are another major issued for Google, and over the past year have become a significant issue for the company. And Google must surely be lobbying for the approval of its $12.5 billionacquisition of Motorola.

According to Consumer Watchdog, Google issued this statement about its increased lobbying spend: “We want to help policy makers understand our business and the work we do to keep the Internet open, to encourage innovation and to create economic opportunity. Lobbying is part of that process.”

Read the rest at this link.