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Special Interests - Essay Example

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Special Interests Author’s Name Institutional Affiliation Special Interests Interest groups have been in existence for a long time. This has been the case in the country. However, these groups have changed in the course of history. This is due to changes of the needs of the society over the period…
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Download file to see previous pages On the other hand, they also take note of the legislative process and the bill making process. This enables them to influence the executive, legislature, and judiciary (Wilson, 2009). This has proved significant in the country. Some of the groups have limited following while others enjoys vast membership. This has been the case in United States. This paper seeks to focus on interest groups. An interest group consists of people sharing a goal mostly of influencing the government and lawmakers (American Government, n.d.). The purpose is to offer linkage either to the lawmakers or executive. Such groups further their policies in a different arena. Moreover, such group aims to manipulate public opinion, elections, and public policy (American Government, n.d.). Their focus is to influence the government through various ways. The main ways of influence are through lobbying, donation, financial pledge, and volunteering. These groups do not engage in profit making activities. Moreover, they represent a narrow focus on their intended purposes, and hence they do not represent the general population (Wilson, 2009). Interest groups are myriad in United States today. They also exist in different forms. Some have a vast membership while others only have limited membership. This sometimes depends on available resources. In America, several interest groups exist. Examples of such interest groups include the National Manufacturers Association, AFL-CIO, American Farm Bureau Federation, American Medical Association, American Bar Association, American Civil Liberties Union, Sierra Club, National Council of Churches, Common Cause, Public Citizen, National Governors Association, American Legion and Veterans of Foreign Wars, and Association for the Advancement of Retired Persons (American Government, n.d.). These groups represent the interest of profession, field, or a group of people. These interest groups have attracted serious debates in the United States for time. These debates revolve the merits and demerits of such groups. There exist a strong relationship between interest groups and political parties. This is seen in various aspects, in the United States. The first most important link is the way in which interest group fund political parties during electioneering period. The contributions are made through the Political Action Committees (PACs). Most of the fund is provided to the congress. This is because most of these groups have interest as to which party has the majority of seats in congress. This helps these groups in ensuring that their policies focus is taken care of in the congress. However, such donations are meant to have a little impact on the political side (Brunell, 2005). This ensure this through provision of support to the incumbent as they require little amount of money to seek reelection. These groups show preference to the party according to their interest. For example, the labor groups prefer the democrats while the corporate side prefers the republicans (Hays, 2001). However, PACs provide money across the political divides. Nevertheless, the pattern of donations appears to be skewed towards one side. This happens to either the democrats or republicans. Throughout history, campaign in the United States appears to be a costly affair. This has made it possible for overreliance by the congress on funding from the interest groups. However, they also rely on individual contribution, but contribution from the ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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