ESA halts political contributions in wake of US Capital chaos

Trade body says it is reflecting on what to do moving forward

ESA halts political contributions in wake of US Capital chaos

US video games trade body the Entertainment Software Association (ESA) has said it is pausing political donations via its political action committee (PAC) after five of recipients voted to overturn the US election results.

As reported by, the trade body has decided to halt contributions as it figures out what to do moving forwards. OpenSecrets shows that five Republican representatives received cash from the ESA; California's Kevin McCarthy and Jay Obernolte, Earl L Carter from Georgia, Indiana's Jackie Walorski and Bill Johnson from Ohio.

Getting political

These politicians voted to overturn the results of the US presidential election in the middle of an insurrection at the US Capitol in Washington DC last week.

"Given the events and actions that led to the violence at the US Capitol, we are pausing contributions from the ESA PAC as we reflect on the tragedy and our path forward," read a statement from the ESA.

For the 2020 election cycle, the ESA PAC donated a total of $48,300; 56.52 per cent of this – $27,300 – went to Democrats, while the remaining $21k was donated to Republican candidates.

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PCGamesInsider Contributing Editor

Alex Calvin is a freelance journalist who writes about the business of games. He started out at UK trade paper MCV in 2013 and left as deputy editor over three years later. In June 2017, he joined Steel Media as the editor for new site In October 2019 he left this full-time position at the company but still contributes to the site on a daily basis. He has also written for, VGC, Games London, The Observer/Guardian and Esquire UK.