Political contributions and lobbying

ExxonMobil believes that registering and voting, keeping informed on political matters, serving in civic bodies and campaigning and office-holding at local, state and national levels are important rights and responsibilities of the citizens of a democracy.

Article Aug. 3, 2020

Political contributions and lobbying

We believe that sound public policy is achieved when a variety of informed voices participate in the political process. For these reasons, ExxonMobil exercises its right to support and participate in policy discussions.

Corporate political contributions

The Board of Directors has authorized ExxonMobil to make political contributions to candidate committees and other political organizations as permitted by applicable laws in the United States and Canada. ExxonMobil’s support of candidates and political organizations reflects corporate interests and not those of any individual employee, officer or independent director. The political contributions of the corporation, as well as the contributions from the company-sponsored political action committee, are reviewed with the board of directors annually and are routinely verified during internal audits of the corporation’s public and government affairs activities.

In 2019, ExxonMobil contributed $875,000 in support of five national political organizations of state officials. In addition, the company contributed almost $253,000 in election support to over 180 state-level candidates and 11 committees in eight U.S. states. Contributions are reported to applicable governing agencies. As required of federal contractors by law, ExxonMobil has not used corporate treasury funds to support any federal candidates, national political parties or other political committees, including Super PACs. Also at the federal level, ExxonMobil has chosen not to use treasury funds or political action committee funds for direct independent political expenditures, including electioneering communications. 

Corporate political contributions – annual summaries

Itemized lists of corporate political contributions to the national political organizations and state-level candidates and committees for the past five years are available here. 

ExxonMobil PAC

As with many corporations, ExxonMobil offers certain eligible employees and retiree shareholders an opportunity to participate in the U.S. political process by contributing to a company-sponsored Political Action Committee (PAC). Participation in the PAC is completely voluntary. Political contributions made from the PAC are reported monthly to the Federal Election Commission, and are a matter of public record.

In 2019, the ExxonMobil PAC disbursed over $719,000 to federal and state candidates and committees. A listing of ExxonMobil PAC contributions for the 2019-2020 election cycle is available below. A detailed schedule of ExxonMobil PAC contributions from previous years can be accessed on the U.S. Federal Election Commission website at http://www.fec.gov.

Corporate PAC contributions

Political lobbying and advocacy

ExxonMobil engages in lobbying in the United States at both the Federal and State levels to advocate our positions on issues that affect our Corporation and the energy industry. We have a responsibility to our customers, employees, communities and shareholders to represent their interests in public policy discussions that impact our business.

ExxonMobil has an established practice to determine which public policy issues are important to the Corporation. This practice includes soliciting input from relevant business lines and functional departments such as Law and Public and Government Affairs. ExxonMobil’s Vice President for Public and Government Affairs, who reports directly to the Management Committee, is responsible for the stewardship of identified key public policy issues which guide the Company’s lobbying efforts and political contributions. Each year, the Vice President for Public and Government Affairs presents the Company’s political contributions and lobbying expenditures to the full Board, along with the Board’s Public Issues and Contributions Committee (PICC), which is comprised entirely of independent outside directors. In addition, reviews of the Company’s key issues are conducted by the Management Committee several times a year as part of a regular oversight process. Positions on many key issues are available on this website as well as Exxchange, ExxonMobil’s advocacy community portal. Our lobbying and political contributions are aligned with those positions.

ExxonMobil provides support to a variety of think tanks, trade associations and coalitions in order to promote informed dialogue and sound public policy on matters pertinent to the Corporation’s interests. These areas include, among others: fiscal policy, international trade, energy, environment, labor/pension matters, education, civil justice reform and public health. Our support does not constitute an endorsement of every policy position or point of view expressed by a recipient organization. We conduct an annual evaluation of the merits of each organization and reserve the right to initiate, sustain or withdraw support at any time. Some of the support provided to these organizations may be used by the firms for lobbying. ExxonMobil reports quarterly the portion of dues used for lobbying purposes in public Lobbying Disclosure Act filings.

Lobbying is highly regulated in the United States. ExxonMobil fully complies with federal and state regulations by reporting its federal lobbying to the U.S. Congress and state-level lobbying to appropriate entities as required. In 2019, ExxonMobil reported federal lobbying expenses totaling $9.75 million in its public Lobbying Disclosure Act filings. This total includes expenses associated with the costs of employee federal lobbying, as well as those portions of payments to trade associations, coalitions and think tanks that are spent on federal lobbying. ExxonMobil employees and consultants were registered to lobby in 34 state and local jurisdictions and the company reported $1.1 million in state and local lobbying expenses in 2019.

Federal lobbying reports

Below are ExxonMobil’s 2017-2020 lobby reports filed with the U.S. Congress.

ExxonMobil also provides support to organizations that promote international relationships, institutions with strong research capabilities that contribute to informed policy decision-making, and organizations that assess public policy alternatives on issues of importance to the energy industry. Read more about ExxonMobil’s contributions for Public Information and Policy Research.

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