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11 J. Legal Analysis 1 (2019)

handle is hein.journals/jlegan11 and id is 1 raw text is: 






THE POLITICS OF CEOs





Alma   Cohen*, Moshe Hazant, Roberto Tallaritat and David Weiss5




ABSTRACT

      This article studies the political preferences of chief executive officers (CEOs) of public
      companies. We use Federal Election Commission records to compile a comprehensive
      database of the political contributions made by more than 3800 individuals who served
      as CEOs of Standard & Poor's 1500 companies between 2000 and 2017. We find a sub-
      stantial preference for Republican candidates. We identify how this pattern is related to
      the company's industry, region, and CEO gender. In addition, we show that companies
      led by Republican CEOs tend to be less transparent to investors with respect to their
      political spending. Finally, we discuss the policy implications of our analysis.

      (JEL Codes: G3, G34, G38, K2, and K22).


1.  INTRODUCTION


Chief  executive  officers  (CEOs)   of public  companies preside over a significant
fraction  of the American economy and wield substantial power over a majority
of the  assets held  by business   firms. Their  power   over  corporate   resources,  as
well  as their significant  stature  and  prestige  in the  economic system, enables
public-company CEOs to have significant influence over policy and political
decisions.  In this article, we  argue  that understanding the political preferences



*   Harvard Law School, Cambridge, MA, USA. Tel-Aviv University Berglas School of Economics, Tel
    Aviv, Israel. NBER, Cambridge, MA, USA. ECGI Brussels, Belgium. CEPR London, UK. Email:
    alcohen@law.harvard.edu

t   Berglas School of Economics, Tel-Aviv University Tel Aviv, Israel. CEPR, London, UK.
I   Harvard Law School, Cambridge, MA, USA.
§   Berglas School of Economics, Tel-Aviv University, Tel Aviv, Israel.
    This article is part of the work of the Project on Corporate Political Spending of the Harvard Law
    School Program on Corporate Governance. We  would like to thank Lucian Bebchuk and Itay
    Saporta, the editor, and anonymous referees for valuable comments and discussions. We have
    also benefitted from invaluable research assistance by Shay Acrich, Omer Braun, Zoe Piel, and
    Ewelina Rudnicka. We gratefully acknowledge the financial support of the John M. Olin Center
    for Law, Economics, and Business and the Program on Corporate Governance at Harvard Law
    School, the Israel Science Foundation, and Tel-Aviv University.
( The Author(s) 2019. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of The John M. Olin Center for Law, Economics and
Business at Harvard Law School.
This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial License
(http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/), which permits non-commercial re-use, distribution, and reproduction in any
medium, provided the original work is properly cited. For commercial re-use, please contact joumals.permissions@oup.com
doi:10.1093/jla/lazOO2

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