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WASHINGTON — It’s no secret that the pharmaceutical industry has spent record-setting sums on lobbying in recent years. But much of that increase, according to a new report from a watchdog group here, is specific to the issue of drug pricing, which has taken hold as a top-tier policy issue on Capitol Hill.

The number of companies that cited “drug pricing” or variations on the phrase in disclosure documents has more than quadrupled in the last five years, according to Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington, a nonprofit focused on government ethics issues.

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