The American Hospital Association's political action committee took in $565,971 in 1994-$38,777 more than it raised in 1993 and nearly $87,000 more than it collected in 1992, the last congressional election year.
Mark Seklecki, the AHA's political affairs director, said the PAC has been trying to increase donations steadily over the last four or five years so it has ready funds for a federal election year. The PAC donated all but $50,000 to $60,000 to political candidates in 1994, Seklecki said.
The AHA gave two House Democratic leaders the legal limit of a combined $10,000 for the primary and general elections: Minority Leader Richard Gephardt of Missouri and Minority Whip David Bonior of Michigan. House Speaker Newt Gingrich (R-Ga.) received $8,500 and Majority Leader Richard Armey of Texas received $500. Both won in landslide elections.
Control of the House shifted from the Democrats to Republicans as a result of the November elections.
The AHA gave $1,000 to Senate Majority Whip Trent Lott of Mississippi, who was the only member of the Senate majority or minority leadership to receive an AHA contribution. The rest were not up for re-election.