Using plant-level data for Brazilian manufacturing firms, this paper provides evidence that government control over banks leads to significant political influence over the real decisions of firms. I find that firms eligible for government bank lending expand employment in politically attractive regions near elections. These expansions are associated with additional (favorable) borrowing from government banks. Further, these persistent expansions take place just before competitive elections, and are associated with lower future employment growth by firms in other regions. The analysis suggests that politicians in Brazil use bank lending to shift employment towards politically attractive regions and away from unattractive regions.