Big Electric Companies Behind ‘Grassroots’ Ad Campaign in Florida
But there are indications the group is more Astroturf than grassroots: The website is maintained by the Edison Electric Institute, a trade association for big dividend-paying electric companies.
According to television ad contracts obtained as part of ProPublica’s Free the Files project, the contact person listed for some of the Florida ad buys was Stephanie Voyda, the institute’s director. On many contracts, the Alliance for Savings & Investment, a group that represents dividend-paying companies, is listed as a co-buyer with Defend My Dividend.
Voyda did not respond to repeated requests for comment from ProPublica. Neither did Jim McCrery, a lobbyist and former Louisiana representative who serves as the manager of the alliance.