Microsoft on Friday said it is temporarily cutting off donations to politicians who voted against certifying the US election results or supported efforts to overturn President Joe Biden’s victory.
Contributions from employees, shareholders and family members channeled through a Microsoft Corporation Stakeholders Voluntary PAC will be withheld from those lawmakers through the 2022 election cycle, according to corporate vice president Fred Humphries.
He added that the political action committee will create a Democracy Forward Initiative to support campaign finance reform and voting rights.
“We believe these steps are appropriate given the importance of these issues for the stability and future of American democracy,” Humphries said in a blog post.
The PAC had suspended political contributions after the deadly attack last month on the US Capitol Building by supporters of former president Donald Trump.
In an unprecedented second impeachment trial, Trump is accused of fomenting the attack by his supporters on the US legislature, forcing a halt to proceedings to certify Biden’s victory in the November presidential election.
The January 6 violence continues to reverberate in Washington. Prosecutors have charged some 180 people in the attacks, according to a tally by the George Washington University Program on Extremism, and hundreds more are under investigation.
The Justice Department has suggested it could build a case for seditious conspiracy by some Trump-supporting extreme-right groups in the attack.
In a White House rally just before the attack, Trump encouraged supporters to reject the election results and to “fight like hell.”
The Microsoft PAC is suspending all donations to members of Congress who voted to object to the certification of the election results, according to Humphries.
More than 3,000 Microsoft employees donate to the PAC, and Humphries said the announced moves resulted from feedback gathered from many of them in video-meetings.
“We do realize that these steps, while significant, will be too much or too little for some employees,” Humphries said.
“There were several other good ideas that arose from our recent meetings, and we will continue to consider other ways we can strengthen the MSVPAC.”