Conservatives live in a world that is often set against them. Whether it is marriage, gun rights, abortion, or any other issue that conservatives have a stake in, a rather loud part of the culture and government are there as a stumbling block. Even the items we purchase and the brands we support often are involved in providing financial support to causes that run anathema to conservatism.
I am not a fan of boycotts, so I certainly wouldn’t suggest that as a response to the challenges conservatives face when spending their hard earned money. Instead, I would suggest that more conservatives shop intelligently and be informed.
Fortunately, this could be much easier thanks to a group called 2nd Vote.
2nd Vote has developed a consumer-focused app for the conservative sphere. By giving its users easy to understand information on how our shopping influences public policy, 2nd Vote gives conservatives a way be informed on where their dollar goes and make better purchasing decisions.
For years, the left has dominated corporate-related activities and funding. Groups like the Center for American Progress and the Human Rights Campaign have received millions of dollars in corporate donations. Companies such as AT&T, Bank of America, CitiGroup, Coca-Cola, CVS, Comcast NBC Universal, Facebook, Microsoft, PepsiCo, Time Warner, Toyota, Walmart, and Visa all donate to left-leaning groups.
With 2nd Vote you can follow the money and see which companies work to fund these groups and which ones lean more conservative or neutral. 2nd Vote launched by scoring five issues: Second Amendment Rights, Abortion, Environment, Marriage, and Corporate Welfare. As of this week, they announced the addition of their sixth issue: Education.
“We are continually looking for ways to provide consumers with the information they need to make conservative shopping choices,” said Chris Walker, Executive Director of 2nd Vote. “The 2nd Vote app is changing the way conservatives can shop by giving them an easy way to hold their dollars accountable and giving them a way to engage and act on public policy every day, not just on Election Day.”
The app rates everything from banks to coffee shops as liberal, lean liberal, neutral, lean conservative, or conservative on a corresponding scale of 1 to 5. The lower the number, the more liberal the company. 2nd Vote extensively researches both corporate political contributions and company policies to form their ratings, and they watch the companies closely so company ratings can go up or down depending on their contributions and policies.
On the issue of education, 2nd Vote’s research has found that companies such as General Electric, AT&T, State Farm, IBM and even Taco Bell have all supported Common Core. They’ve also found that a lot of business-related groups support school choice as well, so it can be tricky to paint an overall picture since these issues tend to be on opposite sides of the political spectrum.
2nd Vote seeks to connect the dots on public policy and corporate spending, and they expect the issues they score to continue to grow.
“Our members have been great to work with, and the feedback has been tremendous,” said Walker. “We’ve been asked to look and see which products are made in the USA and which companies have actively lobbied for and are profiting off of the federal takeover of health care for starters, and we’ve got some other ideas up our sleeve for the coming months as well.”
The device is available for free as an Apple, Android, Web, and Kindle app and is also available on the 2nd Vote website, as are the details on how the scorecard works. Additionally, you can follow 2nd Vote on Twitter and on Facebook.