All hail the mighty balloon lobby

deflated balloon

MICHAEL WATERS / THE OUTLINE – In New Jersey, the top lobbying spenders are from the following industries: energy, healthcare, insurance, and … balloons.

Last year, the Balloon Council — the trade group behind Bill Clinton’s one true source of joy — funneled $344,099 into state lobbying efforts, trailing major interest groups like the New Jersey Food Council ($1,151,556), the New Jersey Hospital Association ($818,332), and Prudential Financial Inc. ($778,353). Nationally, it has spent more than $1 million in the last five years.

The Balloon Council’s primary target? Anti-balloon environmental laws that it worries will cripple the industry, such as the one brought before the New Jersey House and Senate this month, which would prohibit the “intentional release of balloons inflated with lighter-than-air gases.” …

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