American Bankers Association

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The American Bankers Association (ABA) is a banking industry trade association. [1] According to its website, the ABA "works to enhance the competitiveness of the nation's banking industry and strengthen America's economy and communities."[2]

Ties to the American Legislative Exchange Council

As of 2011, ABA’s Vice President of Grassroots Advocacy and State Issues, Jamie Clark, represents ABA on the Private Sector Executive Committee of the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) Commerce, Insurance and Economic Development Task Force.[3] [4]

About ALEC
ALEC is a corporate bill mill. It is not just a lobby or a front group; it is much more powerful than that. Through ALEC, corporations hand state legislators their wishlists to benefit their bottom line. Corporations fund almost all of ALEC's operations. They pay for a seat on ALEC task forces where corporate lobbyists and special interest reps vote with elected officials to approve “model” bills. Learn more at the Center for Media and Democracy's, and check out breaking news on our site.

Jamie Clark is an experienced lobbyist. (The Center for Responsive Politics’ Open Secrets lobbyist database has an entry for “James Clark,” who is listed as having been a lobbyist for ABA since 2006.)[5]


The ABA has spent $2,170,000, as of July 2011, on lobbying, according to the Center for Responsive Politics’ lobbying database. It spent $7,760,000 in 2010, while it spent $9,417,000 in 2009.[6]

The SEIU (Service Employees International Union) writes, "the American Bankers Association (ABA) is leading the campaign to oppose reforms that would hold banks accountable and protect consumers. Since helping to create the economic crisis and taking trillions of dollars in bailouts and backstops from taxpayers, big banks have been on a lobbying spree.

"The ABA heavily lobbied in the 1990s to champion policies that fueled the current crisis including the repeal of the Glass-Steagall Act, which had kept risky investing separate from consumer banking. This left banks with more money for risky investments that ended up in the subprime market.

"The ABA has spent $7 million in the three quarters since the bailout to fight reforms- more than the $6.2 million they spent on lobbying in all of 2007. Along with their lobbying partners in the financial, insurance, and real estate sector, they have unleashed $321 million in lobbying in the nine months following the bailout."[7]

Political contributions

On its website, the ABA states that BankPac (American Bankers Association PAC), "the industry's largest political action committee, collects personal contributions from individual bankers, bank-sponsored PACS, affiliated state bankers association PACS, state association executives, and ABA staff. These contributions support candidates seeking election or reelection to the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives."[2]

In the 2010 U.S. election, the ABA’s BankPAC gave $1,810,000 to Republicans and $869,500 to Democrats on the federal level, 67.5% to 32.5%, respectively.[8]

In the 2008 U.S. election, the ABA gave $2,812,550 to federal candidates through its BankPac - 58% to Republicans and 42% to Democrats.[9]

2010-2011 ABA Board of Directors


  • Chairman Stephen P. Wilson, Chairman and CEO LCNB National Bank Lebanon, OH
  • Chairman-Elect Albert C. Kelly, Jr., President and CEO SpiritBank Bristow, OK
  • Vice Chairman Matthew H. Williams, Chairman and President Gothenburg State Bank Gothenburg, NE
  • President and CEO Edward L. Yingling, American Bankers Association Washington, DC
  • Nessa Feddis Vice President, Senior Federal Counsel, Government Relations Division.

Contact details

American Bankers Association
1120 Connecticut Avenue, N.W.
Washington, DC 20036
Phone: 1-800-BANKERS (1-800-226-5377)

Articles and resources

Related SourceWatch articles

External articles


  1. ABA Public Relations Contacts, American Bankers Association, accessed October 2010.
  2. 2.0 2.1 "The American Bankers Association", American Bankers Association website, accessed September 2009.
  3. [1], “Private Sector Executive Committee.” American Legislative Exchange Council. Accessed July 6, 2011.
  4. Jamie Clark’s profile, Linkedin, accessed July 8, 2011.
  5. [2], “Clark, James.” Center for Responsive Politics. Open Secrets. Accessed July 6, 2011.
  6. [3], “Client Profile: American Bankers Assn.” Center for Responsive Politics. Open Secrets. Accessed July 6, 2011.
  7. The American Bankers Association (ABA) Exposed:,, accessed October 2010.
  8. [4], “American Bankers Assn Contributions to Federal Candidates.” Center for Responsive Politics. Open Secrets. Accessed July 6, 2011.
  9. 2008 PAC Summary Data, Open Secrets, accessed October 2010.
  10. 2010-2011 ABA Board of Directors, American Bankers Association, accessed October 2010.