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By Michael Beckel:
The noble turkey — which was, of course, nearly the country’s national bird more than 200 years ago — has representation in Washington, D.C. Or at least the farmers and industry behind the plump North American birds do.
The National Turkey Federation, the main advocate of the turkey industry, has reported spending $105,000 on lobbying during the first nine months of 2011.
That’s down from peak activity of $320,000 per year on lobbying expenditures during 2008 and 2009, but still a sizable chunk of change.
The religious lobby is on the rise, according to a new study by the Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life.
The number of religious organizations playing the influence game in Washington has swelled since 1970, according to the Pew study. In 1970, less than 40 groups were involved with lobbying or advocacy efforts. Now, that number has risen to more than 200.
The Pew report notes that lobbying for the faithful is often a multi-million-dollar prerogative.