Political Contributions & Lobbying
We have a three-pronged approach to lobbying:
- Educating our elected officials and regulators on issues affecting the company and our industry
- Elevating the conversation above partisan politics
- Engaging with legislators and regulators to support responsible and reasonable laws and regulations
For example, our subject-matter experts in water management, hydraulic fracturing, well integrity, drilling, completions and safety practices review proposed regulations and legislation. They may provide testimony to legislative bodies, participate in industry working groups and collaborate with stakeholder groups to develop mutually acceptable solutions to address concerns. During the latest legislative sessions, we advocated for appropriate industry oversight, and state regulations for associated gas waste prevention and hydraulic fracturing operations. We also supported a bipartisan bill that removed obstacles to using recycled produced water in the New Mexico Permian Basin. In Oklahoma, we educated state legislators on our industry by hosting a tour of a Marathon Oil drilling location and production site in Kingfisher County. The tour introduced the newly elected lawmakers to oil and gas operations and provided Marathon Oil the opportunity to enhance relationships with state officials.
We also participate in the public policy process by contributing to candidates and organizations that support responsible energy development. In 2018, Marathon Oil made direct corporate contributions totaling $101,000 to 27 candidates, political party organizations and PACs, as allowed by state law in New Mexico.
Through the Marathon Oil Company Employees Political Action Committee (MEPAC), eligible employees can contribute to candidates for U.S. federal and state elected office. In 2018, MEPAC donated $119,975 to 136 candidates, political party organizations and PACs. MEPAC is registered with the U.S. Federal Election Commission (FEC) and complies with all FEC, state and local rules and reporting requirements.
The Marathon Oil Company Political Action Committee of Texas (MOCPAC-TX) donated $68,250 to 45 state candidates in Texas in 2018. MOCPAC-TX is registered with the Texas Ethics Commission and complies with all Texas rules and reporting requirements.
Both PACs are managed by a board of employee directors, with oversight from the Health, Environmental, Safety and Corporate Responsibility (HES&CR) Committee of the Marathon Oil board of directors. All PAC contributions are based on a candidate’s position on business issues and without regard for the personal political preferences of company executives or PAC board members.
Marathon Oil makes payments to organizations and trade associations that engage in, among other things, lobbying activities. Through these trade associations, we participated in the U.S. public policy dialogue about critical environmental and energy policies, including rulemaking comment periods regarding issues related to climate change. In the interest of good governance and transparency, we voluntarily report these payments, and our policies and procedures for lobbying and political activities.
Our 2018 Report of Lobbying and Political Contributions discloses corporate contributions made to tax-exempt 527s and 501(c)(4)s that exceeded $35,000, and which the recipient may use for political purposes. Based on information we received from our trade associations, the report also discloses the lobbying portion of our payments and dues made to trade organizations that, if made directly by the company, would not be deductible under section 162(e) of the Internal Revenue Code and that exceed $35,000.
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