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Interests Groups Piques0 Interests Groups Piques0 Presentation Transcript

  • Interest Groups
    • Chp 11
    • Have we reached James Madison’s argument that, “the sphere of influence must be extended to prevent any one group from having too much power?”
    • (Federalist #10)
    What is the role of interest groups?
    • Interest Groups
    Interest Groups: you might think they are simply lobbying organizations trying to convince Congress to pass laws favorable to their organization but there is far more.... James Riddlesperger, Jr. of Texas Christian Univ. argues that interest groups focus on “targets of opportunity,” and that entails not only the legislative branch but also the executive and judicial branch as realms of effective lobbying. It is not as simple as the legislative branch makes laws, the executive enforces laws, and the judicial interprets laws.
    • Interest Groups
    An example? Civil Rights Where were the pressure points for these interest groups to achieve change? 1st- the Presidency in the 1940s. Court? Plessy v Ferguson still active. Congress? Southern Democrats ruled the committees. President? Truman -Executive Order 9981 which desegregated the armed forces. 2nd- Civil rights interests wanted desegregated public schools. Yet run by states and President can’t touch that. Congress still dominated by Southern Democrats. Turn to Courts. 1950s. Long appellate process results in Brown v Board of Education 1954
    • Interest Groups
    An example? Civil Rights Where were the pressure points for these interest groups to achieve change? 3rd- 1960s - MLK and mov’t. Minor civil rights act passed in 1957. Bull Connor. JFK and LBJ all result in 1965 Civil Rights Act.
  • Interest Groups- How They Shape Policy Types of Lobbyists 1) Paid employee of union, association, corporation 2) Temp. Lobbyists. How They Help 1) Source of information 2) Can help politicians with political strategies for getting legislation through 3) Can help formulate campaign strategy and get the group members behind a politicians reelection campaign 4) Source of ideas and innovations
    • Interest Groups
    As a linkage institution. Not like parties because of multiplicity of policy arenas. Not like parties because don’t run own slate of political candidates ( yet... Citizens v. FEC 2010 ). Not like parties because policy specialists rather than generalists. Different goals than political party.
    • Interest Groups
    How? Litigation- class action lawsuits and amicus curiae briefs Grassroot lobbying- celebrity causes (Angelie?) Mass mobilization - mass mailings, email Campaign Contributions
    • Interest Groups
    Perks or Bribery?
    • Interest Groups
    • Theories:
    • Pluralism - it’s a good thing
    • Elite - top 1/3 on it all (NRA, AARP, etc.)
    • Hyperpluralism- Theodori Lowi- interest group liberalism-
          • *subgovernment- Iron Triangles composed of agency-group-committee
    • So much going on (hyperpluralism) that interest groups provide information to citizens and expert knowledge to congressmen
    Positives? Investigate deeper with http://mr-shulman.wikispaces.com/Interest+Group+Scavenger+Hunt
    • Interest Groups
    So How Does a Bill Become a Law?
    • Interest Groups
    So How Does a Bill Become a Law?
    • 90% of Congressman’s time is spent in committee
    • Committees represent make up of Congress 2 Dem : 1 Rep
    • Committees/Subcommittees’ Actions
    • 1. table it
    • 2. kill it
    • 3. amend it
    • 4. pass it as written
    • Interest Groups
    So How Does a Bill Become a Law?
    • How do they make the decision?
      • *testimony from experts
      • *testimony from executive office bureaucrats (esp. on
      • apportionment/budget issues)
      • *testimony from celebrities
      • *testimony from sob stories
      • data - visuals -date - visuals
    • Interest Groups
    So How Does a Bill Become a Law?
      • Note- when a bill comes before Congress on narrow
      • issues then interest groups really have the power!
      • like trade associations, bottlers associations, restaurant industry, consumer electronics, soft drinks
    • Interest Groups
    Current Issues
    • Hundreds, if not thousands, of lobbyists are likely to be ejected from federal advisory panels as part of a little-noticed initiative by the Obama administration to curb K Street's influence in Washington, according to White House officials and lobbying experts...
    • The initiative is aimed at a system of advisory committees so vast that federal officials don't have exact numbers for its size; the most recent estimates tally nearly 1,000 panels with total membership exceeding 60,000 people...
    • Most committee members receive no pay for their participation. They often are urged to take part by companies, trade groups or advocacy organizations that hope to sway government decisions to their advantage. While their operations vary, the panels tend to hold open meetings and issue reports and recommendations, and they often wield significant influence with policymakers because of their expertise in arcane subjects, from nuclear plant safety to wild burro management...
    Lobbyist Pushed Off Advisory Panels http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2009/11/26/AR2009112602362.html?hpid=topnews
    • Interest Groups
    Need to Know Interest Groups
  • Surprising Ineffectiveness of Large Groups Pressure politics most effective from small group Potential Group vs. Actual Group logic of collective good can equal free rider problem Olson’s law of large groups bigger group= bigger free riders. This makes small groups more effective. Explains why corporate interests more effective in groups than consumer interests. Provide selective benefits to members to overcome this dilemma
  • Interest Groups Equal advantage is intensity - and single issue groups are on the rise. swem.wm.edu/beta/flathat/issues/fh20041029SS.pdf http://women4hope.files.wordpress.com/2007/09/pro-life-cartoon.gif http://www.wmsa.net/People/john_mccain/keating.jpg Money counts What do you think? Are recipients of money influenced in their votes?
  • Interest Groups Hall and Deardorff - lobbying as a form of “legislative subsidy” where they define as a “matching grant of costly policy information, political intelligence, and labor to the enterprises of strategically selected legislatures” *purpose of such a strategy is not to change anyone’s mind but rather to help one’s political allies. http://www.wmsa.net/People/john_mccain/keating.jpg
  • Interest Groups -- Concerns Lobbying as shady business or as strict professional representation of legitimate interests? Municipal government lobbyists Electioneering via PACs Corporate Welfare http://www.wmsa.net/People/john_mccain/keating.jpg
  • Interest Groups -- Types Economic - regulation policies, subsidies, tax code, international quotas/tariffs Labor - right to work, union shops, labor interest groups Environmental- Arctic National Wildlife Refuge Equality- NAACP and NOW Consumer Interest- Nader http://www.wmsa.net/People/john_mccain/keating.jpg