Key Industries Switch Support from Blue to Red

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Money and Washington

Big industries know where their bread is buttered. Which is why many of them are happy to switch their support between parties, depending upon which is in control, or which may help them most. That trend can be seen in a new analysis by the Center for Responsive Politics (CRP).

According to the CRP, industries that have made a big switch in allegiance include the health care, energy and Wall Street-related industries.

"Industries and special interest groups are fickle," says a spokesman for CRP. "If they perceive a particular party is sinking in the polls and/or threatening their bottom line, they will turn on a dime and go the other way." Here are some examples:

Health Care Switch:

Most of last year, health care industries favored Democratic candidates and committees. In Jan. 2010, the trend flipped as health care reform neared final passage. Now, 60 percent of their political money has gone to the GOP this cycle.

Energy Switch:

In Jan. 2009, Democrats got 56 percent of energy interests' money. Now, they're sending 74 percent of it to Republicans.

Wall Street Switch:

Until March 2009, Democrats got 63 percent of Wall Street's campaign dollars. Now, the figure has more than reversed itself: 67 percent of Wall Street's money now goes to Republicans.

Lobbyist Split:

Lobbyists gave 86 percent of their money to Democrats in Jan. 2009. Now they evenly split it between Democrats and Republicans.

Sharyl Attkisson is a CBS News Investigative Correspondent based in Washington. You can read more of her posts in Hotsheet here.
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    Sharyl Attkisson is a CBS News investigative correspondent based in Washington.