Drug trade group spent $10.7 million lobbying
The Associated Press reports that the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America spent $10.7 million in the first half of 2007 to lobby the federal government, according to a disclosure form. The group, known as PhRMA, lobbied on issues related to Medicare, patent reform, international trade and drug fees, importation and safety, according to the form posted online by the Senate''s public records office. The group—whose members include Amgen Inc., Eli Lilly & Co. and Pfizer Inc.—lobbied Congress, the Food and Drug Administration, the Health and Human Services Department, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid and other agencies. Former Louisiana Rep. Billy Tauzin, who is PhRMA''s president and chief executive, is also a registered lobbyist for the group. PhRMA''s other registered lobbyists include Mimi Kneuer, who was Tauzin''s former chief of staff; Amy Efantis, former legislative director for Rep. Artur Davis, D-Ala.; Valerie Jewett, former legislative director for Rep. Rodney Frelinghuysen, R-N.J.; and Matt Sulkala, who was senior legislative assistant to Rep. Allen Boyd, D-Fla. Under a federal law enacted in 1995, lobbyists are required to disclose activities that could influence members of the executive and legislative branches. They must register with Congress within 45 days of being hired or engaging in lobbying.