Top 10 Health Professionals Contributing to Federal Candidates and Parties 2008

By Michael Dorausch, D.C.

The war in Iraq, the nation’s economy, and health care, are reportedly the top three concerns for most Americans planning to vote in this years presidential election. The three front running candidates, Hillary Rodham Clinton (D), Barack Obama (D), and John McCain (R), along with their parties, have significantly different philosophies about how to grapple with the issue of health care in the United States. In continuing with our coverage of money in politics and presidential candidates, we take a look today at the top 10 health professionals organizations that are contributing funds to federal candidates and parties for the 2008 election cycle. The list of which organizations are giving (and who’s not giving) may come as a surprise to some.

top contributors to federal candidates and parties 2008(photo: a screenshot for the 2008 election cycle, which shows total contributions of $34,406,008.00, with 53% of that funding going to Democrats.)

Today’s look at health-care money in politics focuses on the top 10 contributing healthcare organizations providing funding to federal candidates and parties for the 2008 election cycle. The list is ranked from number 1 through number 10, with number one being the organization that has contributed the most funds towards this year’s election cycle. The list is followed by a screenshot showing the amounts given by each group, which includes distribution percentages amongst Democrats and Republicans.

Health Professionals: Top Contributors to Federal Candidates and Parties
Election cycle: 2008
Total contributions: $34,406,008

1) American Dental Association
2) American College of Radiology
3) American Society of Anesthesiologists
4) American Optometric Association
5) American Physical Therapy Association
6) American College of Emergency Physicians
7) American Association of Orthopaedic Surgeons
8) American Association of Nurse Anesthetists
9) American College of Cardiology
10) American Academy of Ophthalmology

Rank - Organization - Amount - Democrats - Republicans
The American Dental Association currently holds the number one ranking for contributed funds, which have been equally distributed amongst both Democratic and Republican parties. The American Optometric Association, which ranks at number four, stands out among the list of organizations in the top 10, as overwhelmingly funding Democrats. Two other health-care organizations showing a considerably less than 50-50 split amongst parties are the American College of Emergency Physicians (62% vs. 38%) and the American College of Cardiology (61% vs. 39%).

Interestingly, the American Medical Association does not make the top 10 list of contributors, they are currently ranked at number 15, with an equal distribution amongst both Democrats and Republicans. While the industry of chiropractic did not make the list of top 20 contributors, the American Chiropractic Association currently shows significant support for Democrats over Republicans (63% vs. 37%). Not a single health care association or organization currently shows funding to the Republican Party in excess of 51% of total contributions (the American Physical Therapy Association is the only organization showing a two percentage point in favor of Republicans).

The numbers listed are only a reflection of what data is available today. Information will change throughout this year’s election cycle, but you should be able to access the most recent data on top contributors among healthcare professionals on this fund reporting page.

Methodology of Collecting Data: The numbers provided are based on contributions from Political Action Committees (PACs), soft money donors, and individuals giving $200 or more. (Only those groups giving $5,000 or more are listed here.) In many cases, the organizations themselves did not donate; rather the money came from the organization’s PAC, its individual members or employees or owners, and those individuals’ immediate families. Organization totals include subsidiaries and affiliates. All donations reportedly took place during the 2007-2008 election cycle and were released by the Federal Election Commission on Monday, March 03, 2008. Credit for data provided goes to the Center for Responsive Politics. @ 9:43 pm | Article ID: 1206852235

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