Sen. Warren To Banks: Disclose Donations To Think Tanks

December 4, 2013 9:12 a.m.

Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) is calling on the CEOs of six of the nation’s major banks to disclose donations to think tanks.

“I am writing to encourage you to voluntarily disclose financial contributions your institutions make to think tanks,” Warren wrote in the letter. “In my view, policies by your institutions conceal those contributions from public view are wrong. Greater transparency will benefit your shareholders, policymakers, and, ultimately, the public. “

The letter, to the top officials at JPMorgan Chase & Co., Wells Fargo & Company, Bank of America Corporation, Goldman Sachs Group, Inc., Citigroup Inc., and Morgan Stanley, comes a few days after the president and senior vice president for policy at the Third Way think tank wrote a scathing op-ed in The Wall Street Journal blasting the economic populism of Warren and New York Mayor-elect Bill De Blasio (D).

“When you use corporate resources to support think tanks, there are only two more outcomes from public disclosure — those contributions do not influence the work of the think tanks or those contributions do influence the think tanks’ research and conclusions,” Warren continued. “Either way, shareholders have a right to know how corporate resources are spent, and, even more importantly, policymakers and the public should be aware of your contributions and evaluate the work of the think tanks accordingly.”

Since the op-ed the Progressive Change Campaign Committee, which supports Warren, has called for a Democratic congresswoman who is running for governor in Pennsylvania to step down from an honorary post at the think tank. The group also started a petition calling on Third Way to “reveal its Wall Street donors so everyone knows why they are attacking Elizabeth Warren.” 

Third Way told TPM later on Wednesday that it agreed with Warren’s letter. 

Read Warren’s letter below:


Letter From Elizabeth Warren 12-4-2013

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