Processing Magazine

Drug industry trade group spent $5 million lobbying in second quarter

August 6, 2008

The Associated Press reports that Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America spent more than $5 million lobbying the federal government in the second quarter, according to a recent disclosure form. The Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America, whose more than 30 members include Pfizer, Amgen Inc. and Eli Lilly & Co., lobbied Congress, the Food and Drug Administration and other agencies in the April-June period. The drug industry, consistently one of the top spenders in Washington, has opposed a host of proposals unfriendly to its interests since Democrats gained control of Congress in 2006. The trade group lobbied against efforts that would allow the U.S. to import cheaper prescription drugs from Canada and other foreign countries. Proponents said foreign competition would help drive down U.S. drug prices, but the pharmaceutical industry warned it could expose Americans to counterfeit medications.

Pharmaceutical industry lobbyists also opposed patent reform legislation that it argued could weaken legal protections on drugs'' intellectual property, according to the form filed July 21 with the House clerk''s office.