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WASHINGTON — In the final weeks before Tuesday’s midterm elections, the pharmaceutical industry’s campaign donations began flowing heavily and unexpectedly in a new direction: toward Democrats.

The party received a full 63 percent of the industry’s campaign contributions reported in the first half of October, according to data compiled by the Center for Responsive Politics. That’s a new trend to cap off a tumultuous election cycle: Up to this point, just over half of drug industry money has flowed toward Republicans, and the GOP has received substantially more campaign cash from the pharmaceutical and health products industry in the past decade.


The shift comes just before an election in which Democrats are widely expected to regain control of the House of Representatives — and caps a cycle in which the pharmaceutical and health products industry has contributed more to political campaigns than in any non-presidential election. So far, industry employees and affiliated political committees have sent $24.6 million to candidates around the country running for Congress and state offices.

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