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NC hospitals' clout in capital built with money, contacts

The Charlotte Observer, April 26, 2012

N.C. hospitals are one of the most powerful and effective interest groups in state politics, deploying a squad of lobbyists at the General Assembly and giving generously to elected officials. The N.C. Hospital Association leverages these connections. The association's political action committee has handed out more than $1 million to state candidates over the past decade, ranking in the top 10 PACs for political donations. The hospitals have given the most to those with the most power: former senators Tony Rand and Marc Basnight, Attorney General Roy Cooper and former House Speaker Jim Black, all Democrats.