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Washington Lobbying Sets Record in 2007

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Corporations, unions and other interests spent a record-setting $2.79 billion in 2007 on lobbying Washington officials for favorable policies, said a study from a watchdog group released on Thursday.

The Center for Responsive Politics said spending in 2007 eclipsed the previous record in 2006 by $200 million, with health care interests, Wall Street, the real estate industry and insurers among the biggest spenders.

“Lobbying seems to be a recession-proof industry. In some respects, interests seek even more from our government when the economy slows,” said Sheila Krumholz, executive director of the 25-year-old group that analyzes data on money in politics.

The latest figures show a year of typical growth for K Street, the nickname often applied to the capital’s booming influence industry, but there were notable changes, too.

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