Chart of the Week: Where Lobbyist Contributions Go

In Massachusetts, the biggest chunk went to state lawmakers—so here are the reps and senators who received more than $10,000 last year from lobbyists.

Last week, I showed you which 2013 Boston municipal candidates received contributions from registered state lobbyists. But, as I mentioned, that’s just a small part of nearly $1.2 million that those lobbyists doled out. As you can see here, 70 percent of the contributions reported by more than 700 individual lobbyists last year went to state lawmakers:

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So this week, I’ve compiled all the state representatives and senators, as well as statewide officeholders and candidates, who received more than $10,000 last year from lobbyists.

It’s not easy to pull in that sum. Lobbyists are limited to $200 contributions to each candidate, so it takes 50 friendly lobbyists to get you to that 10k line. And lobbyists can’t give $200 to everybody; they max out (like everyone else) at $12,500 to all state (non-federal) candidates a year.

Most lobbyists give to just a few pols, if any; a few dozen are big spenders. In fact, nearly half the total contributions—a little over $500,000—came from just 58 individual lobbyists, who each doled out more than $5,000. That includes 15 who gave more than $10,000 each. They are some of the well-known names and faces on Beacon Hill, although not well known to the general public (more about them another time).

Unsurprisingly, they are most likely to give to the most powerful, as you can see in the chart below.

They also prefer incumbents. But two pols made this list without already holding an elected office. One is Republican gubernatorial candidate Charlie Baker, who lags behind Democratic frontrunner Martha Coakley, the current Attorney General, but still has gained significant support from the lobbying class.

The other, interestingly, is Dorchester state representative candidate Dan Hunt, who is in a crowded field for Marty Walsh’s old seat. Hunt, himself politically active and part of a well-connected political family, has raised more than $100,000 for the campaign. That includes more than $15,000 from registered lobbyists—the $11,100 in late 2013, shown below, and at least another $4,525 identified from his early 2014 contribution reports. None of the other candidates in the race have received contributions from more than a handful of lobbyists.


CandidateOffice, Start of 2013Ran For/Running ForAmount
DeLeo, RobertHouse SpeakerRe-election (2014)$47,075.00
Dempsey, BrianHouse Ways & Means ChairRe-election (2014)$33,774.00
Rosenberg, StanSenate Majority LeaderRe-election (2014)$28,775.00
Murray, ThereseSenate Presidentnone (retiring)$23,300.00
Finegold, BarrySenatorTreasurer (2014)$22,150.00
Spilka, KarenSenate Majority WhipCongress (2013)$19,985.00
Downing, BenjaminSenatorRe-election (2014)$19,850.00
Mariano, RonHouse Majority LeaderRe-election (2014)$17,800.00
DiDomenico, SalSenatorRe-election (2014)$17,225.00
Coakley, MarthaAttorney GeneralGovernor (2014)$17,130.00
Costello, MichaelHouse Financial Services ChairRe-election (2014)$16,950.00
Clark, KatherineSenatorCongress (2013)$16,920.00
Forry, Linda DorcenaRepresentativeState Senator (2013)$16,700.00
Petruccelli, AnthonySenatorRe-election (2014)$15,725.00
Kennedy, TomSenatorRe-election (2014)$15,550.00
Moore, RichardSenate President Pre TemporeRe-election (2014)$15,375.00
Brewer, StephenSenate Ways & Means Chairnone (retiring)$14,415.00
Naughton, HankRepresentativeRe-election (2014)$14,350.00
Welch, JamesSenatorRe-election (2014)$14,025.00
Bump, SuzanneAuditorAuditor (2014)$13,100.00
Collins, NickRepresentativeState Senator (2013)$13,100.00
Michlewitz, AaronRepresentativeRe-election (2014)$12,650.00
Rodrigues, MichaelSenatorRe-election (2014)$12,625.00
Moore, MichaelSenatorRe-election (2014)$12,575.00
Baker, CharlienoneGovernor (2014)$12,050.00
Keenan, John D.RepresentativeRe-election (2014)$11,900.00
O'Flaherty, EugeneRepresentativenone (resigned)$11,525.00
Hunt, DannoneState Representative (2014)$11,100.00
Jones, BradHouse Minority LeaderRe-election (2014)$11,025.00
Sanchez, JeffreyRepresentativeRe-election (2014)$10,950.00
Flanagan, JenSenatorRe-election (2014)$10,925.00