Wall Street spending $1.5M a day on lobbying, campaigns

The financial sector has shelled out more than $800 million to influence Washington via lobbying and campaign spending in the current election cycle, according to a new report from Americans for Financial Reform.

That works out to roughly $1.5 million a day, a total on pace to eclipse Wall Street’s effort four years ago to beat back the Dodd–Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act, the left-leaning policy group said.

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Dodd-Frank was ultimately enacted in July 2010, and the landmark statute turned four this week. But nearly half of hundreds of regulations required by the law remain incomplete, and battles persist over their final language.

“The industry’s continued high level of spending reflects the ongoing battle to reshape the financial system, and the industry’s persistent efforts to repeal or win exemptions from parts of the law, to weaken implementing regulations, and to forestall further proposals for change,” the group concluded in its 40-page report.

The study, based on data compiled by the Center for Responsive Politics, shows that roughly 62 percent of the political spending went to Republicans; 38 percent went to Democrats.

The top recipients in the Senate feature members of both parties. Rounding out the top four were Sens. Cory Booker (D-N.J.), Minority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellGun proposal picks up GOP support Children’s health-care bill faces new obstacles Dems see Trump as potential ally on gun reform MORE (R-Ky.), Minority Whip John CornynJohn CornynGun proposal picks up GOP support House bill set to reignite debate on warrantless surveillance Republicans jockey for position on immigration MORE (R-Texas) and Edward MarkeyEdward (Ed) John MarkeyDems lambaste Trump’s ‘outrageous’ EPA chemical safety pick Dems plan to make gun control an issue in Nevada Dem senator pitches ideas for gun control after shooting MORE (D-Mass.), according to the study.

Both Booker and Markey ran in special elections during the cycle, while McConnell and Cornyn are up for reelection this fall.

In the House, the top four recipients were Speaker John BoehnerJohn Andrew Boehner‘Lone wolf’ characterization of mass murderers is the epitome of white privilege Pelosi urges Ryan to create select committee on gun violence Ex-congressman Michael Grimm formally announces bid for old seat MORE (R-Ohio), Jeb Hensarling (R-Texas), Paul RyanPaul RyanThe Hill Interview: Budget Chair Black sticks around for now Gun proposal picks up GOP support GOP lawmaker Tim Murphy to retire at end of term MORE (R-Wis.) and Majority Leader Eric CantorEric CantorEric Cantor offering advice to end ‘immigration wars’ Trump's olive branch differs from the golden eras of bipartisanship After divisive rally, Trump calls for unity MORE (R-Va.), who was defeated this spring in a surprise primary upset.

Top industry spenders on both lobbying and campaigns included the National Association of Realtors, the American Bankers Association and Prudential Financial, the report found.