US subsidiary of Canadian company faces questions about Romney super PAC donation

Jennifer White Contributor
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Federal Election Commission filings reveal that an American subsidiary of the Canadian insurance conglomerate Fairfax Financial Holdings has donated $1 million to the Mitt Romney political action committee. That contribution is raising eyebrows among election watchers.

Donors at OdysseyRe, the U.S. subsidiary, may or may not have broken federal law. The U.S. Supreme Court’s controversial 2010 “Citizens United” ruling allowed American companies to make donations to campaign super PACs but bans foreign companies from donating.

But some believe the ruling was vague enough to allow foreign money to enter American politics through foreign-owned U.S. companies.

OdysseyRe is based in Connecticut.

Fairfax Financial Holdings vice president Paul Rivett told the Canadian Press that a team of U.S. citizens, consisting of Fairfax board members, made the decision to donate to the Romney-partisan Restore Our Future PAC.

OdysseyRe counsel general Peter Lovell said the reason the company chose to donate to the Republican presidential candidate is because as an international re-insurer in the United States, Odyssey operates under one of the highest corporate tax rates in its business.

“Gov. Romney has proposed meaningful corporate tax reform that would help to level the playing field; consequently, a victory by Gov. Romney in November would be beneficial to OdysseyRe,” Lovell said

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