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News Summary: Congress silent on Dreamliner woes

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The Associated Press | March 19, 2013 12:24 PM EST | AP


NARY A PEEP: As Boeing, its airline customers and federal safety regulators struggled over the past two months to solve problems with the new 787 Dreamliner's fire-plagued batteries, one player has been strangely silent: Congress.

RULES OF THE GAME: The bipartisan silence reflects Boeing's political clout, wielded by legions of lobbyists, fueled by hefty political campaign contributions and by the company's importance as a huge employer and the nation's single largest exporter.

HEFTY SPENDING: The aircraft maker spent more than $83 million on lobbying over the past five years, according to disclosure reports. It fielded 115 lobbyists last year.