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Health care reform is a boon to former congressional staffers

By Laurie Bennett

December 21, 2009 at 6:30am

The Chicago Tribune and Medill News Service have completed a careful body count of health lobbyists.

Their conclusion: “At least 166 former aides from the nine congressional leadership offices and five committees involved in shaping health overhaul legislation - along with at least 13 former lawmakers - registered to represent at least 338 health care clients since the beginning of last year.”

Their clients paid $635 million over the past two years to push their interests in Washington.

The news organizations’ study found that the lobbyist horde included at least 14 former aides to House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer and at least 13 former aides to Sen. Max Baucus, Finance Committee chairman.

The leading organization in the insider lobby on health care is PhRMA, which employs at least 26 former staffers and members of Congress.

Next in line were Amgen Inc. and the Biotechnology Industry Organization.

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