Drug lobby sticks with Dems through hard times 

The Pharmaceutical Researchers and Manufacturers of America gave 62 percent of its PAC money to Democrats last quarter the latest FEC filings show. This doesn't quite jibe with the Democrats' Big-Business-Loves-the-GOP line, and it pokes yet another hole in President Obama's claim that passing the health-care bill was an act of defiance of the special interests.

This money is just direct contributions, and it doesn't include money the drug industry sent to outside groups that cut ads for Harry Reid.

Of course, if history is a guide*, the Washington Post will take this latest data as proof that the drug lobby is cozying up to Republicans, because 62 percent Democratic actually represents a more Republican quarter for PhRMA than the previous quarters: so far this election cycle, Dems have gotten 73% of the money PhRMA has given to candidates.

*Here's the highlight of my blog post from March:

Imagine you write about the intersection of business and government. Say the campaign finance numbers come in for 2009 at the Center for Responsive Politics. They show that the Securities and Investment Industry, Wall Street, gave 63% of its money to Democrats, improving on the Democrats' majorities from the 2006 and 2008 cycle when Wall Street gave Dems 52% and 57% of campaign cash. In fact, the numbers for the 2010 cycle so far are the most one-sided numbers we've seen from Wall Street as far back as records go.

As gravy, say the top three Wall Street recipients are all Democrats, and 8 of the top 10 are Democrats. And this is all amid harsh Democratic rhetoric aimed at Wall Street "Fat Cats."

What story would you write?

If you're the Washington Post, the story here is that "Commercial banks and high-flying investment firms have shifted their political contributions toward Republicans in recent months."


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Timothy P. Carney

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