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December 17, 2012

By the numbers: the gun lobby and the gun control debate in Congress

With gun control on the agenda in Congress, the Sunlight Foundation took a look at the political influence of the National Rifle Association and found it dwarfs that of the leading gun control group, the Brady Campaign to End Gun Violence.

The non partisan group -- which says it doesn't take a position on the issue -- said it found that when it comes to gun policy, "Congress is pretty much only hearing from one side. The NRA spends 66 times what the Brady Campaign spends on lobbying, and 4,143 times what the Brady Campaign spends on campaign contributions."

The foundation said that since 2011, the NRA spent at least $24.28 million: $16.83 million through its political action committee, plus $7.45 million through its affiliated Institute for Legislative Action.

But that money might not have paid dividends: the foundation said the $16 million spent by the NRA's super PAC, which went to opposing Democrats, produced a 2.27 percent return on investment.


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"Planet Washington" covers politics and government. It is written by journalists in McClatchy's Washington Bureau.

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