A lobby group dominated by Wal-Mart has successfully blocked efforts in recent years to increase security measures in U.S. ports wherever those measures might cut into the company’s profits, a report delivered to members of Congress by the AFL-CIO April 5 stated.

The report details how the Retail Industry Leaders Association (RILA) lobby group has opposed introduction of electronic seals for cargo containers coming into U.S. ports, dismissing them as “feel good measures.” RILA has opposed independent inspections of supply-chain security practices and new container-handling fees to pay for improved port security.

The AFL-CIO report reveals that Wal-Mart and its lobbyists have given $191,500 to House Homeland Security Committee members, and $63,000 to current members of the Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs.

“Congress needs to take immediate steps to ensure our nation’s safety is outside the sphere of influence of large corporations like Wal-Mart,” said AFL-CIO President John Sweeney.

In testimony before the House Committee on Homeland Security April 4, RILA’s vice president of global supply chain, Jonathan Gold, invoked terrorism to oppose regulations that might cut into Wal-Mart’s profits, which topped $11 billion last year. “If commerce is disrupted … through ill-conceived regulation of our international trading system,” he warned, “then the terrorists will have achieved one of their key goals.”