The Role of Interest Groups

Role of Interest Groups One of the most important ways people in the United States make their views, ideas, and demands known to elected officials is through interest groups. No matter how specialized some interest groups can be, people can almost always find an interest group that fits them in how they want to influence public policy. In contrast to other systems, elections of the U. S. president and Congress are politically separate events, even when held at the same time.

Each legislator has to make a winning coalition in his or her state or district, and the nature of these coalitions is very different from the majority coalition that the successful presidential candidate assembles. Weak party loyalty of Democrats and Republicans enhances the influence of interest groups. During elections, their financial support is almost always essential. After elections, groups that supported the winning candidate become closely involved in policy making.

Federalism is another feature of the system that promotes interest groups in the distribution of political power to states and localities. National organizations start with associations at the state and local levels that will eventually combine. Distribution of political power encourages a greater variety of interest groups, while it also further weakens the party system. In addition, a strong, independent judiciary in the American system enhances the power of interest groups. Interest groups can utilize the abilities of judiciaries to get policy objectives that they cannot obtain through legislative action.

Lastly, the freedom of speech, press and assembly allows the views of an interest group to be expressed, no matter how different or obscured it is. Basically, these American freedoms, which offer plenty of opportunities to publicize societal problems and express positions on public policy, encourage the formation of interest groups. In conclusion, the role of interest groups is how express people express their views while fitting in to a social group for the purpose of influencing and even benefitting candidates of an election to get what they want out of our society and government.

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