Politics
3:54 pm
Wed April 27, 2011

Moroun family donates $1.5 million to candidates in 2009-2010

The powerful Moroun family donated just under $1.5 million to political candidates during the 2009-2010 election cycle.

The Morouns own the Detroit International Bridge Co., which owns the Ambassador Bridge. They are also against building a new international bridge, which Governor Snyder is in favor of constructing.

The Detroit Free Press reports:

As the push comes for the Legislature to decide whether to agree to build a public bridge across the Detroit River, 15 senators and 30 representatives have something in common on the issue.

All got money during their campaign last year from the Moroun family, owners of the Detroit International Bridge Co., which wants to stop construction of a rival bridge 2 miles downriver from its Ambassador Bridge. Led by Manuel (Matty) Moroun, principal owner of the company, the Morouns gave nearly half a million dollars to winning candidates.

In all, the Moroun donor network gave almost $1.5 million to state and congressional candidates in the 2009-10 election cycle. If those contributions had been combined in a single political action committee, it would have been the largest corporate campaign donor in Michigan.

Among those donations was $325,000 the Morouns' Ammex Duty Free Co. gave the National Republican Governors Association, which ran ads supporting Gov. Rick Snyder.

But the largesse didn't sway Snyder, whose administration leads the fight for a new bridge.

The Canadian government has offered a $55o million loan to build approaches for the new bridge.

-Brian Short, Michigan Radio Newsroom