Eddie J. Scott
Professor (DR) Scott Freeman
POL 110 U. S. Government
Date: 2 December 2012
1. Define an interest group, with examples
An interest group, who is also called an advocacy group, lobbying group, pressure group, or special interest, is a group, however loosely or tightly organized, that is determined to encourage or prevent changes in public policy without trying to be elected. However, the Tea Party formed after the 2008 election with the sole intent to gain representation and move their issues forward, as well as get those elected to office that would talk to their interest. On the other hand you have (“People for The American Way retrieved, November 26, 2012) People For the American Way is dedicated to making the promise of America real for every American: Equality. Freedom of speech. Freedom of religion. The right to seek justice in a court of law. The right to cast a vote that counts. The American Way. Though few would argue that anyone person cannot make a difference in politics. Many say there is power in numbers, and political institutions are more likely than not to respond to a collective effort rather than to any one individual with a single voice on the issues they are fighting for. An interest group is an organization whose members share common concerns and try to influence government policies affecting those concerns. Interest groups are also known as lobbies; lobbying is one of the ways in which interest groups shape legislation and bring the views of their constituents to the attention of decision-makers. Some of the reasons why these interest groups came about are economic, government, religious, and civil rights. Economic interest groups include both small and large organizations that represent big/small business issues, such as U.S. Chamber of Commerce, National Association of Manufacturers and big labor…i.e. The American Federation of Labor and Congress of Industrial Organization. Public interest groups are just as the title, they represent the public interest and do not expect anything in return for their efforts to change the lives of the public and better the cause for which they are focus on. However, the activists who staff these groups do gain financially through attracting donations from both individuals and foundations that support their issues. They receive positive attention via news coverage, sometime under very negative disagreement over the very issues they are proposing. One of the best known groups in this category is the League of Women Voters, this group fight for the rights of all women to simplify voting procedures for women as well as common cause, backing effective government policy. Government interest groups are formed to bring forward the issues that face our local, state and federal government, to Congress and the administration. Some of the groups include National Governors Association, National Conference of Mayors, and National League of Cities. They focus of many issues and task; however, one of the major tasks that they help with is getting federal grants to help state and local governments within their communities. The importance of such grants are that they help off-set some of the federal taxes paid. Religious interest groups are also at the front of the special interest race. Though our Constitution says there should be separation of church and state this has not preclude this group from lobbying. I would say that they have become more involved in the political race in recent years than in the past and one of the groups at the center of this is The Christian Coalition, which inveigle its support from conservative Protestants, with a push to support prayer in school and opposition to gay rights and war on banning...
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