Odyssey Re Breaks New Ground With Million Dollar Romney Donation

Odyssey Re has put the reinsurance on the U.S. presidential election radar by contributing a $1 million to Republican candidate Mitt Romney’s political action committee, according to federal election filings made public last week.

Odyssey made the contribution million dollar contributions on August 17, 2012 to Romney’s Restore Our Future “Super PAC,” according to filings compiled by OpenSecrets.org. Although no event is tied to filing, published reports state that Governor Romney attended a “big ticket” fundraiser in Martha’s Vineyard on that date at the home of technology executive Jim Sims.

Odyssey — owned by Canadian reinsurance conglomerate Fairfax Holdings – would normally run afoul of federal election laws that ban foreign individuals and companies from donating to U.S. federal races,
according to an article in Politico. However, the firm’s Stamford, Connecticut-based corporate headquarters “appears” to avoid that legal hurdle since the funds were made by U.S.-based executives, the article stated.

Super PACs were created in 2010 after a Supreme Court decision that allowed political action committees to accept unlimited donations as long as the money does not directly support an individual candidate.

The $1 million donation is by far the largest the firm has made to U.S. candidates. Filings show that Odyssey’s previous campaign contributions of $4,350 were split between Romney and former presidential candidate Jon Huntsman.

The insurance industry has donated $16,938,344 in the 2012 election cycle, according to OpenSecrets.

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