When it came to buying influence in Washington, Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae were among Corporate America's biggest spenders.
Freddie Mac (FRE, Fortune 500) spent over $94.8-million on lobbyists since 1998, making it the nation's 12th-largest lobbying client, while Fannie Mae (FNM, Fortune 500) bought $79.5-million of influence, the 20th biggest spender, according to the Center for Responsive Politics.
"They wanted to fend off regulation of their enterprises," said Massie Ritsch of the Center.
Campaign contributions bought influence as well, including donations to the presidential candidates.
Sen. Barack Obama is the No. 3 recipient of Fannie and Freddie campaign dollars, having collected $123,000 from the companies since he first ran for the Senate in 2004, according to the Federal Election Commission and the Center for Responsive Politics.
The former chief executive of Fannie Mae, James Johnson, was the original head of Obama's vice presidential search team. Johnson resigned from Obama's campaign amid controversy over discounted home loans he had received.
Sen. John McCain has received $19,000 from the two companies in the past ten years.