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Employees of private companies that produce the main pieces of the US nuclear arsenal have invested more than $18 million in the election campaigns of lawmakers that oversee related federal spending, and the companies also employ more than 95 former members of Congress or Capitol Hill staff to lobby for government funding, according to a new report.
The Center for International Policy, a nonprofit group that supports the "demilitarization" of US foreign policy, released the report on Wednesday to highlight what it described as the heavy influence of campaign donations and pork-barrel politics on a part of the defense budget not usually associated with large profits or contractor power: nuclear arms.
As Congress deliberated this spring on nuclear weapons-related projects, including funding for the development of more modern submarines and bombers, the top 14 contractors gave nearly $3 million to the 2012 reelection campaigns of lawmakers whose support they needed for these and other projects, the report disclosed.
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