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It's good to have friends

The Washington Post reports: President Bush wants to lower barriers to building nuclear power plants, and the lobby that promotes nuclear energy could not be happier. To show its thanks, the group has given $100,000 to help pay for his inauguration.

"He's a big supporter," said John E. Kane, chief lobbyist for the Nuclear Energy Institute. "Our donation is just a small way of supporting him."

The nuclear energy industry's contribution is part of a record-breaking outpouring of corporate cash for next week's inaugural festivities. At least 88 companies and trade associations, along with 39 top executives -- all with huge stakes in administration policies -- have already donated $18 million toward a $40 million goal for the country's 55th inaugural celebration. ...

Practically all the major donors have benefited from Bush administration policies, especially from corporate and individual tax cuts, deregulation and the new prescription drug benefit that is part of Medicare. Most also stand to boost profits further because of Bush's second-term proposals, which include limiting medical malpractice suits, creating private investment accounts as part of Social Security and making a tax-code revision that is expected to reduce taxes on investments. -- Big-Money Contributors Line Up for Inauguration (washingtonpost.com)