The Washington Times - October 18, 2012, 12:45PM

Big oil and billionaires helped fund the Republican convention in Tampa, while Democrats turns to unions, Indian tribes and their own corporate donors to help pay for their convention in Charlotte, according to new federal records released Thursday.

The American Petroleum Institute gave $2 million to the Republican National Convention’s host committee, the filings shows, and the convention also received $5 million from major GOP donor Sheldon Adelson, $1.5 million in cash and software from Microsoft and $1.1 million from the Bank of America.

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Billionaire industrialist David H. Koch gave $1 million, as did financier Paul Singer and New Balance Chairman James S. Davis.

Coca-Cola provided nearly $1 million in free sodas.

Agribusiness giant and subsidy beneficiary Archer Daniels Midland Co. kicked in $250,000, and UPS delivered half a million dollars in free packages. UPS gave only $125,000 to the Democrats, and the free products and services highlighted how Democrats relied on corporate largesse despite a pledge not to take money directly from
companies.

The Democratic convention’s primary sponsors included a number of labor unions, including the Service Employees International Union and AFSCME, which represents state and federal government workers.

At least four Indian tribes, including the Sycuan Band of the Kumeyaay Nation, kicked in $100,000 to the Democrats, making tribes a major sponsor.

Conventions are one of a dwindling number of ways in which corporations can contribute directly to entities controlled by elected officials, and the party conventions provided an unparalleled opportunity for businesses, labor unions and others seeking favorable legislation — and their lobbyists — to meet with every party figure who
matters, all in one place.