Two influential Democratic senators on Thursday sharply criticized the decision of Coach Industries, an organization that generously supports the campaign of Republican candidates in the United States, to stay in Russia for the time being.
“It’s time for Coach Industries to place the values of democracy above its own profits,” Senate Democrat leader Chuck Schumer and Ron Wyden, who chairs the finance committee, said in a statement.
In a message on Wednesday, the group’s director of operations explained that it had decided to continue supporting its employees in Russia.
Koch’s subsidiary, Guardian Industries, owns two glass factories in the country with nearly 600 people, and the coach directly employs 15 people, Dave Robertson explained.
“Even though the Guardian business in Russia is a very small part of the coach, we will not leave our employees there or hand over these manufacturing facilities to the Russian government so that they can operate and profit,” he defended in the message.
After the invasion of Ukraine and the imposition of heavy economic sanctions by several Western governments, many multinational corporations decided to leave the country or suspend their operations there.
According to a recent list kept by a team from Yale University, some still choose to continue their activities in Russia, including coach, Chichen or Schlumberger.
According to Open Secrets, which collects political campaign finance data, Coach Industries funds more than 90% of Republicans’ election campaigns.
Its owner, Charles Koch, regularly uses his fortune to maintain very liberal positions.
Coach Industries is one of the largest unlisted companies in the United States, based in Wichita, Kansas and has operations ranging from chemicals and petroleum to paper.
In their press release, Democratic senators stressed that they are considering legislation to prevent the United States from granting tax credits for taxes paid by American companies in Russia, as they have already done for North Korea and Syria.