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Tickers in this Article: DISH, EPE, CMCSA, DST, FIG
There is no arguing that it pays for a corporation, and its stakeholders to contribute to the campaigns of a politician whose platform will make its business more profitable. For example, a candidate that is pro-military, could definely help the bottom line of an arms manufacturer should, while a candidate that is pro-alternative energy, would help the bottom line of solar manufacturers, and other green energy producers alike.

In a study by Michael Cooper, associate professor of finance at the University of Utah, along with assistant professors Huseyin Gulen of Purdue and Alexei Ovtchinnikov of Vanderbilt University; it was found that the stocks of companies that contributed to Congressional candidates had better share price returns than those that didn't. The difference was significant as well, with an average premium in returns of 6% per year.

Based on the theory that a company or its stakeholders will contribute to the campaign of a candidate that will help their business, it makes sense to invest in the companies that have, either directly or indirectly, made contributions to the candidate that you believe will win. If Senator John McCain wins, companies that supported him should, theoretically, do better than the companies that made contributions to Democrat nominee Barack Obama. To help with this, we have created the "John McCain Stock Index", which is made up of five companies whose major stakeholders have made contributions to McCain's campaign. We have used contributors who made the 2007 Forbes 400 list, to make sure that we are using contributors with influence. (To see how the other half invests, read Five Stocks For Obama Backers.)

The McCain Stock Index

Contributor
Forbes 400 Ranking *
Position at Company
Charles Ergen
27
Founder of Echostar Communications (Nasdaq:DISH)
Dan Duncan
39
Founder of Enterprise GP Holdings (NYSE:EPE)
Amos Hostetter Jr.
107
Major Shareholder of Comcast (Nasdaq:CMCSA)
George Argyros
271
Director of DST Systems (NYSE:DST)
Wesley Edens
297
CEO of Fortress Investment Group (NYSE:FIG)
* As of the 2007 Forbes 400
Italics signifies ranking is a tie


Platform Highlights
To be able to choose which presidential candidate you think will win, you must understand their platform. Here is a quick overview of McCain's presidential platform, which will help you decide whether or not to invest in the companies listed in the index above.

Source: Forbes.com

If elected as president, McCain proposes a "peace through strength" approach, which will help to end conflict in the Middle East through a larger Army and Marine Corps and effective missile defense. He's said that lower government spending along with lower taxes, smaller government, and free trade will be the best path to American prosperity. (For more on this type of economic policy, read our related article Understanding Supply Side Economics.)

He is a social conservative, being pro-life and against same-sex marriage.

Comcast Corporation
Comcast is up 7.5% this year from $17.64 on the first day of trading in 2008, to close on June 24 at $18.98. These gains, come as a little bit of a surprise, as the sector (as measured by the DJ US Broadcasting & Entertainment Index) has dropped about 8% in the same time period. This company is in good shape to continue providing good returns going forward, as noted by Stock Picking Community member bjgroves888 in a recent stock pick:

Comcast is part of the system that will need to be in place when the FCC requires all television stations to broadcast digitally. Comcast is currently the only company that is pushing this issue with the public. I think that with Comcast\'s all-in-one packaging options, their stock will increase consistently over the long term.

I have to agree with bjgroves888, especially when looking at Comcast's situation when compared with competitors; with operating margins of 19% when compared to the industry average of only 14%. As long as it continues to grow its quarterly revenue at about 13% (year-over-year) as it has been doing, and it continues to keep margins tight, the future looks good for this raging bull.

Add You Two Cents
Who do you think will win the presidential race? Will campaign contributions pay off with higher share prices for Comcast, and the other companies above if Senator McCain gets the vote? Be sure to join me (aytonmm) in the FREE Stock Picking Community to share your thoughts and see what other investors are saying.

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