K Street reaps major rewards lobbying on healthcare legislation

K Street appears to have cashed in on the lengthy battle over healthcare reform.

About 1,750 businesses and organizations spent at least $1.2 billion in 2009 to lobby on health reform and other issues, according to a study from the Center for Public Integrity released Friday. A precise figure isn’t available because lobbying disclosure forms don’t require companies or other groups to itemize how much they spend to lobby on a particular issue.

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The largest lobbying firm in terms of revenue, Patton Boggs, set the pace in healthcare lobbying too, according to the Center. Fifty-three clients paid Patton Boggs $7.68 million to lobby on healthcare and other issues.

Alston & Bird was number two, with 40 clients that spent $4.6 million on healthcare and other issues. Alston’s lobbying team included Thomas Scully, a former administrator of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, which will implement large segments of the reform law.

See the Center’s study here.

Ken Gross, an ethics lawyer at Skadden Arps, told the Center that the lobbying campaign on healthcare reform was likely the most expensive ever.