Flashcards in Pressure Groups Deck (70)
Theory which suggests that political power in a society doesn't rest simply with the electorate or with the governing elite, but is distributed amongst a number of groups representing widely different interests within society
Which author argued in favour of Pluralism?
Robert Dahl 'Who Governs'
- Political party nominations, urban redevelopment and public education
- Democracy is all about compromise
Theory which suggests that political power in a society rests with a small group who gain power through wealth, family status or intellectual superiority
Who argues that the US is an elitist state?
Wright Mills 'The Power Elite'
- US ruled by a small governing elite, ordinary Americans had little control over how they were governed as a result
What are the 2 types of Pressure Group?
What are membership pressure groups? Give an example
Seek to represent individual Americans rather than organisations and groups
eg. NRA (single issue)
NAACP (sections of society)
What are institutional pressure groups? Give an example
Seek to represent other organisations and groups
- American Business Conference (business and trade groups)
- US Chamber of Commerce
- AFLCIO (trade unions)
What are the 5 functions of Pressure Groups?
How do Pressure Groups represent?
Form an important link between the public and the politician
- Can represent citizens strongest views that a senator can't necessarily
Why is citizen participation a key function?
Many Americans seek far greater, more frequent participation in the democratic process
Participation in specific policy area (pro guns)
How do Pressure Groups educate?
Warn people of the possible dangers if issues aren't addressed, as well as the likely effect of decisions made by the government
Give an example of agenda building
Manufacturers and designers of CDs and computer software forced the government to take action against wide scale piracy of their goods in China
- promised to shut down such factories
What is programme monitoring?
Scrutinising and holding government to account in the implementation of policies to ensure that promises are fulfilled, policies delivered and regulations enforced
Give an example of programme monitoring on pharmaceutical drugs
Bush announced plans to allow for private retirement accounts in January 2005 at his SOTU address
- Club for Growth, conservative economic group, ran advertisements in favour
- AARP sent mail to members and organised forums against the bill
What are the 3 main reasons for joining a pressure group?
What are material reasons for joining a pressure group?
Rewards that individuals or companies get in return for their donations to a pressure group
- Sierra Club sends out a magazine with photo competitions
- AARP gives health care insurance to its members
What are purposive reasons for joining a pressure group?
Joining a group in order to be part of a movement or cause, to try and make society a better place
- Some join Amnesty International, in order to draw attention to torture and violations of human rights
What are solidarity reasons for joining a pressure group?
Social benefits brought about by interacting with like minded people.
- Joining National Aubudon Society allows watchers to join their local chapter, and so participate in local wildlife events
What are the 4 main methods used by Pressure groups?
Electioneering and Endorsement
Organising grassroots activities
What are PACs
Political Action Committees - Groups that collect money from their members and then give it to candidates and political parties that support their interests
Of the Top 12 Contributees in the Senate in the 2012 election, how many lost?
Scott Brown of Massachusetts, a Republican in a highly democratic state
What were the donations and results of such with Dave Camp in 2012?
Received 3 million dollars
Won 63% of the vote in the Michigan 4 District
What were the donations and results of such with Dean Heller in 2012?
Won the Senate seat in Montana with 46% of the vote
- Recieved 2.1 million dollars
How does the League of Conservation endorse candidates?
Publishes a 'Dirty Dozen' every 2 years, which are the 12 candidates who have the worst record on environmental conservation
What was the effect of the League of Conservations list in 2012?
6 incumbents were defeated, only 1 incumbent was re-elected
How did the AARP affect a 2012 election in North Carolina?
Put 10 questions to two candidates - Incumbent Hayes and Challenger Kissel
Kissel agreed with all 10 of the AARPs questions, Hayes agreed with none
Kissel was endorsed and won the vote 55% to 45%
An attempt to exert influence on the policy-making, legislative or judicial process by individuals or organised groups
What is the K Street Corridor
A reference to the fact that most pressure groups are based in Washington, where they can directly lobby members of federal, state and local government
What kind of Pressure Groups provide voting cues?
Democrats - AFLCIO, NAACP
Republicans - American Conservative Union, US Chamber of Commerce