Pharmaceutical industry donated to two-thirds of Congress ahead of 2020 elections: analysis

Pharmaceutical industry donated to two-thirds of Congress ahead of 2020 elections: analysis
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More than two-thirds of Congress cashed a check from the pharmaceutical industry ahead of the 2020 election, according to an analysis from STAT.

Pfizer, which played a big role in the creation and distribution of the COVID-19 vaccine, donated up to $1 million to 228 members of Congress in 2020, and has also written checks for 1,048 candidates in state legislative races. 

Meanwhile, Amgen, which is based in California, donated nearly $1.3 million to 218 members of Congress.

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The lawmakers who received the highest amount from the pharmaceutical industry include Rep. Richard HudsonRichard Lane HudsonGOP's Banks burnishes brand with Pelosi veto Lawmakers spend more on personal security in wake of insurrection Pharmaceutical industry donated to two-thirds of Congress ahead of 2020 elections: analysis MORE (R-N.C.) — who sits on the Energy and Commerce Health subcommittee, which oversees a significant share of Congress's health care legislation — and Reps. Kurt SchraderWalter (Kurt) Kurt SchraderModerate Democrats call for 9/11-style panel to probe COVID-19 origins Overnight Health Care: White House signals new COVID-19 strategy as delta variant spreads | McConnell urges vaccinations | Maryland says all COVID-19 deaths last month were among unvaccinated Democrats eye next stage of spending fight MORE (D-Ore.), Robin KellyRobin Lynne KellyInitial hospital costs for gun injuries tops B per year: GAO report Lobbying world Pharmaceutical industry donated to two-thirds of Congress ahead of 2020 elections: analysis MORE (D-Ill.) and Anna EshooAnna Georges EshooHouse committee approves slate of bills to improve telecom security Hillicon Valley: House advances six bills targeting Big Tech after overnight slugfest | Google to delay cookie phase out until 2023 | Appeals court rules against Baltimore Police Department aerial surveillance program House lawmakers introduce bill to increase American awareness of cyber threats MORE (D-Calif.), according to STAT.

The analysis comes after the government relied on drugmakers to develop a COVID-19 vaccine during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

But in 2019, Democratic lawmakers pushed for the Lower Drug Costs Now Act, which would have cost the industry $500 million in revenue, STAT noted. However, even with Democratic lawmakers attempting to pass the legislation, they still received $6.6 million in contributions from pharmaceutical companies. Republicans received $7.1 million. 

STAT's analysis was conducted using data from donations made by 23 drug manufacturers and trade groups to Congress members in 2019 and 2020.