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Interest Group Organization. Chapter 18, Section I Page 503. Interest Groups. A group of people who share common goals and organize to influence government. Power of Interest Groups.

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interest group organization

Interest Group Organization

Chapter 18, Section IPage 503

interest groups
Interest Groups
  • A group of people who share common goals and organize to influence government
power of interest groups
Power of Interest Groups
  • “In no country of the world has the principle of association been more successfully used, or applied to a greater multitude of objects, than in America….In the United States associations are established to promote the public safety, commerce, industry, morality, and religion” – Alexis de Tocqueville, 1835
power of interest groups1
Power of Interest Groups
  • Defining Interest Groups
    • Interest groups support candidates who favor their ideas
    • Interest groups are concerned with only a few issues or specific problems
      • They do not try to gain the support of members with different points of view
    • Organized on the basis of common values
      • Not geographical areas
power of interest groups2
Power of Interest Groups
  • Purpose of Interest Groups
    • Bridging the gap between citizens and the government
    • Citizens communicate their “wants” or policy goals through interest groups
power of interest groups3
Power of Interest Groups
  • Political Power
    • Strength in numbers
      • “Local Safety Association”
    • Interest Groups on the state and national level exert influence far beyond the power of individual members
leadership and membership
Leadership and Membership
  • Leaders keep members informed of group activity through newsletters, mailings, and telephone calls
  • They act as speakers for the group
  • They plan strategy, raise money, and make financial decisions
reasons for membership
Reasons for Membership
  • A group may help promote and individual’s economic self-interest
  • An individuals beliefs, values, or attitudes
  • Nonpolitical, perhaps social function
who belongs
Who Belongs?
  • People with lower socioeconomic levels are lesslikely to join such groups
  • Membership tends to come from upper income levels
business and labor groups
Business and Labor Groups
  • Most common and effective
  • Business-Related Interest Groups
    • Among oldest and largest in the nation
      • NAM works to lower individual and corporate tax
  • Labor-Related Interest Groups
    • AFL-CIO (largest)
      • UAW, UMW, Teamsters
agricultural groups
Agricultural Groups
  • Represent almost 6 million farmers
    • Amer. Farm Bureau Federation
      • Large farms
    • National Farmers Union
      • Smaller farmers – favor price supports
    • Commodity Associations
      • Dairy, potato growers, etc.
other interest groups
Other Interest Groups
  • Professional Associations
    • ABA, AMA
  • Environmental Interest
    • National Wildlife Federation, Sierra Club
  • Public-Interest Groups
    • Work towards the interest of ALL Americans
  • Interest Groups in Government
    • National Governors Association