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FACT SHEET In addition to campaign contributions to politicians, companies spend billions of dollars every year to lobby Congress and federal agencies. The Center for Responsive Politics a research group tracking money in U.S. politics and its effect on elections and public policy provides data about totals spent on lobbying starting in 1998 for everyone from AAI Corporation to Zurich Financial. Table 1 shows that total lobbying spending constantly increased from 1998 to 2007 and it is likely to be the case for the year of 2008. Similarly, the number of lobbyists has steadily grown from the early 2000’s onward.

Total Lobbying Spending

Number of Lobbyists

1998 1999 2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008

1 0 , 6 8 9 1 9 9 8 13,674 12,664 11,986 12,264 13,067 13,324 14,445 15,462 15,731 1999 2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007

16,982 2008

$1.45 Billion $1.44 Billion $1.54 Billion $1.63 Billion $1.81 Billion $2.04 Billion $2.17 Billion $2.41 Billion $2.60 Billion $2.82 Billion $1.58 Billion

Table 1. Source: the Center for Responsive Politics, www.opensecrets.org, August 6, 2008.

Geneva-based Covalence is specialized in tracking the ethical reputation of more than five hundred multinational companies by focusing on forty five criteria ranging from labor standards to lobbying practices. It found that from 2002 to 2008, oil and gas, pharmaceuticals, automobile, chemicals, food and beverage, and mining and natural resources were the top six sectors most involved in lobbying practices worldwide. The research it carried out also highlighted that all of them counted a higher number of negative news or ethical demands. Table 2 shows that the pharmaceutical industry, for instance, has an average of three positive news or ethical offers for sixteen ethical demands hence an ethical quote equal to -13. Within this sector, Covalence found by searching information from the media, companies and civil society that some multinationals including GlaxoSmithkline, Sanofi Aventis and Boehringer Ingelhim only had negative news.

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