Tech workers are opening their wallets to beat Trump even with stock prices soaring and profits near records - CNBC
Jul 04, 2020 2 mins, 45 secs

But while the world's most valuable tech companies have expanded their dominance in the 3 1/2 years of Donald Trump's presidency, with an assist from corporate tax breaks, employees at those same companies are more adamant than ever about unseating him.  .

"A lot of people have been making a lot of money in Silicon Valley while watching the world fall apart," said Misha Chellam, a former start-up founder who last year started the non-partisan Council on Technology and Society to engage tech executives on political issues.

For decades, the tech industry has leaned left, particularly in the hotbeds of Silicon Valley and Seattle.

A good chunk of tech spending to date went towards a competitive Democratic presidential primary, while Trump effectively ran unopposed.

Between the two candidates, Biden has collected more than 92% of the donated money from the top tech companies, according to OpenSecrets.

Amy McGrath, who's running to unseat Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell in Kentucky, is getting a big boost from tech money, along with Jaime Harrison, the Democrat taking on Lindsey Graham in South Carolina, and Mark Kelly, who's running against Martha McSally in Arizona. .

Trump's tumultuous relationship with the tech industry dates back to his anti-immigrant campaign rhetoric and efforts to impose a Muslim travel ban shortly after he took office in 2017.

That year, Trump also refused to call out white nationalism after the violent Charlottesville rally and pulled out of the Paris climate agreement.

Tech executives lauded the Trump administration in 2018 for lowering the tax on repatriated cash, allowing them to bring hundreds of billions of dollars back from overseas, paving the way for heftier buybacks.

But Trump made it hard in 2016 for many mainstream Republicans to suck it up and support their party's candidate.

Clinton won by a wider margin in Seattle and across most of the Bay Area than did Obama four years earlier, and employees at the five most valuable tech companies contributed 60 times more to Clinton than to Trump.

But like many of his colleagues, Brown is unhappy with where the country is headed. .

"I'm just exasperated at the fact that Adobe stock hits all-time highs at the same time that the economy has been hit so hard," said Brown, who's based in Seattle.

"This is the first year that I've really paid that much attention to political campaign giving," Brown said, adding that he's previously been more inclined to donate to nonprofits.

But even some tech companies that were farther to the right on the political spectrum have swung dramatically toward the Democrats.

His company and the industry as a whole count on immigration for talent and sensible trade policies for conducting business. Within his circle of tech workers, the executive said, people are concerned that the U.S.

Margaret O'Mara, a history professor at the University of Washington, said that the tech industry is more politicized than ever.

Cisco CEO Chuck Robbins, who succeeded lifelong and vocal Republican John Chambers at the helm in 2015, joined the parade of tech executives in tweeting #BlackLivesMatter after the killing of George Floyd in late May by a police officer in Minneapolis set off a wave of nationwide protests?


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