DATA RELEASE: Campaign Contributions Behind the World's Most Expensive Weapon

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Submitted by Pamela Behrsin on Jul 17, 2014

July 17, 2014-Lockheed Martin's F-35 jet, the most expensive weapons project ever, has received federal appropriations from Congress year after year despite a string of technical problems and repeated failures to deliver functioning planes on time and within budget. Just last week, the current F-35 fleet was grounded due to engine fires. The project is now expected to cost $396 billion by the time it is completed.

  • Lockheed Martin, maker of the F-35, has given $12.4 million to members of Congress (Senate and House of Representatives) from January 1, 2001 - December 31, 2013.

Today, July 17, 2014, by unanimous voice vote, Senate appropriators approved more funding for procurement of the F-35 for fiscal year 2015. The Department of Defense appropriations bill that includes the funds will now get a vote on the Senate floor.

  • Current members of Congress (Senate and House of Representatives) have received $8.1 million from Lockheed Martin from January 1, 2001 - December 31, 2013.
  • Current members of Senate have received $1.5 million from Lockheed Martin from January 1, 2001 - December 31, 2013.
  • Sen. Dick Durbin (D-Ill.), Chair of the Senate Defense Appropriations Subcommittee, has received$74,200 from Lockheed Martin from January 1, 2001 - December 31, 2013, 4.8 times as much as the average for a U.S. Senator ($15,382). His committee originates the annual Senate legislation that funds the F-35 procurement program.
  • Current members of House have received $6.5 million from Lockheed Martin from January 1, 2001 - December 31, 2013.
  • Rep. Rodney Frelinghuysen (R-N.J.), Chair of the House Defense Appropriations Subcommittee, has received $66,500 from Lockheed Martin from January 1, 2001 - December 31, 2013, 4.4 times as much as the average for a U.S. Representative ($15,072). His committee originates the annual House legislation that funds the F-35 procurement program.
  • Rep. Kay Granger (R-Texas) has received $226,150 from Lockheed Martin from January 1, 2001 - December 31, 2013, more than any other current member of Congress. She is currently the Vice-Chairman of the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Defense.

Lockheed Martin contributions to members of Congress (Senate and House of Representatives) since the F-35 contract was first awarded to them in 2001. 

Methodology: MapLight analysis of campaign contributions from PACs and employees of Lockheed Martin to current and past members of Congress, from January 1, 2001 to December 31, 2013. Contributions data source: OpenSecrets.org

 

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Editor's Note: A link to this data release can be found here. Please cite MapLight if you use data from our analysis.

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