Did You Know?
There are more than 23 registered lobbyists per lawmaker in Washington, DC.
Corporations and self-interested lobbies influence policy-makers by retaining firms that are well-staffed, often have close relationships with policy-makers, and are highly effective.
In 2011, over $3.3 billion was spent to retain close to 13,000 registered lobbyists in Washington, DC – $1.2 million for each hour that Congress was in session.
On every major policy issue, advocates for the public interest face a well-funded self-interested lobbying machine:
- More than 1,500 companies and organizations hired about 3,100 lobbyists to influence health related legislation in 2011. 
- Close to 500 companies and organizations continue to lobby against the financial-industry reform legislation that passed in 2010.
- Roughly $388 million was spent lobbying Congress on energy related issues. The oil and gas industries alone spent $146 million. In contrast, advocates striving to protect the environment spent a mere $16 million.
- Additionally, companies continue to lobby to lower their own tax rates. Most companies pay about 26 percent in corporate tax. Firms who have lobbied most heavily on tax issues since 2008 pay significantly lower rates – 17.1 percent, on average. Some companies, like GE, paid no taxes in 2010.