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HELENA, MT, September 23, 2020 – It’s no secret that extractive resource and mining corporations have President Trump and his cronies in the palms of their hands. The Trump administration has long prioritized lining the pockets of wealthy CEOs and extractive resource corporations over the health and safety of communities. According to new research released by government watchdog Accountable.US, Trump is sticking to his guns and awarding over $12 million in U.S. taxpayer money meant for small businesses to nine major Canadian mining corporations through the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP). 

“Once again, Trump is doing what he does best: putting his interests before the American people. With gold and silver prices up over 22 percent and 38 percent respectively since the beginning of the year, it’s a hard pill to swallow for any American small business owner on the brink to see wealthy Canadian mining corporations cashing U.S. taxpayer bailouts and then handing out bonuses to top executives and shareholders,” said Jayson O’Neill, Accountable.US spokesperson. “Sorry is not going to cut it this time. If these wealthy Canadian CEOs had any laurels, they’d give the funds back immediately.”  

Instead of focusing on making sure small business owners have the resources and money they need to sustain themselves during a pandemic, the Trump administration is propping up foreign mining corporations and other publicly traded foreign firms. While COVID-19 continues to disproportionately affect communities of color, particularly the Black community, the Trump administration is handing over taxpayer money and clearly more concerned with wealthy Canadian CEOs — several who purport to be libertarians — instead of working towards ensuring communities here in America are safe. 

  • $1.9M of U.S. tax dollars and $1.5M from the Canadian government went to a near-billionaire Canadian’s gold and silver company that then offered $2M in stock options to lenders. McEwen Mining’s CEO is a Canadian “nationalist, philanthropist, libertarian, gold-loving, regulation-hating metals magnate.” 
  • In April 2020, the Trump administration sent up to $2M in PPP funding to a subsidiary of a Canadian mining corporation that reported retaining zero employees. 
  • Billionaire-owned Americas Gold and Silver Corporation got a $4.5M taxpayer-funded bailout from the Trump administration despite being based in Toronto, Canada. 
  • Amir Adnani, the Executive Office, President, and Director of Uranium Energy Corp. was featured on Steve Bannon’s podcast and was a guest speaker at an annual libertarian event called “Freedom Fest”. 

Read the full Accountable.US research report on Canadian mining corporations receiving U.S. taxpayer money here

Accountable.US is a nonpartisan watchdog group that exposes corruption across all levels of government.