Essay on lobbying Campaign

Topics: Lobbying, Supreme Court of the United States, Advocacy Pages: 2 (658 words) Published: October 28, 2013
Essay on lobbying campaign
Lobbying in the United States describes paid activity in which special interests hire well-connected professional advocates, often lawyers, to argue for specific legislation in decision-making bodies such as the United States Congress. It is a highly controversial phenomenon, often seen in a negative light by journalists and the American public, and is frequently misunderstood. While lobbying is subject to extensive and often complex rules which, if not followed, can lead to penalties including jail, the activity of lobbying has been interpreted by court rulings as free speech and is therefore protected by the Constitution.

Since the 1970s, lobbying activity has grown immensely in terms of the numbers of lobbyists and the size of lobbying budgets, and has become the focus of much criticism of American governance. Since lobbying rules require extensive disclosure, there is a large amount of information in the public sphere about which entities lobby, how, at whom, and for how much. The current pattern suggests much lobbying is done by corporations although a wide variety of coalitions representing diverse groups is possible. Lobbying happens at every level of government, including federal, state, county, municipal, and even local governments. In Washington, lobbying usually targets congresspersons, although there have been efforts to influence executive agency officials as well as Supreme Court appointments.

It has been the subject of academic inquiry in various fields, including law, public policy, and economics. While the number of lobbyists in Washington is over twelve thousand, those with real clout number in the dozens, and a small group of firms handles much of lobbying in terms of expenditures. Overall Political scientist Thomas R. Dye once said that politics is about battling over scarce governmental resources: who gets them, where, when, why and...
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