When looking how effectively a country represents its citizens, it is important to take into account the manner in which they are represented. The two main types of representation are descriptive and agency representation. Descriptive representation is the concept that those who represent the American people should not only have the same political interest, but should also mirror the demographic makeup of the people. Agency representation, which is what the United States congress looks like, is when the representation does not reflect the demographic, but they speak for their constituents’ interests in congress. The constituents are able to hold the representatives accountable and can choose not to elect them in the next term, so the representatives
Moreover, the Schoolhouse Rock presentation identified the major committees that play a vast role within legislation, but furthermore failed to acknowledge the significant influence of interest groups, lobbyist, and campaign contributors. Interest groups are pertinent to the legislation process because of their vast influence. While interest groups strive to “influence public policy” to benefit its members, it accomplishes this task by using inside strategies that “pursue a narrow policy of change and directly influence legislation” and through its relationship within the iron triangle that works to “seal off” external influencers that are irrelevant to the groups view towards public policy; thus leaving a “closed
The National Rifle Association is an interest group that supports our right to bear arms. They have been around for over a century and continue to lobby in Congress to help protect our Second Amendment. They currently have 4.3 million members that support the Second Amendment and other groups that educate citizens on gun safety. This group has made a tremendous difference on how our government and society views gun control and is probably the biggest reason we still have our right to bear arms. (www.nraila.org)
Limiting interest group is like cutting off the blood that flows through America’s vein. Interest groups plays a pivotal role in todays U.S society ranging from but not limited to; helping Congress and the administration to draft legislation and policy initiatives, provide information both to government and the public on a broad range of topical issues, and contribute significantly to political
Members of Congress are voted to office by their electorate as their representatives at the congress level of democracy. In their capacity, they may decide to exercise their powers by the will of the people or according to their personal judgment. When the members of Congress opt to be the people’s delegate, their actions in the House and other congressional engagements are a reflection of the will of their district. As such, the delegate representative does not have or exercise the autonomy to represent and decide for their district. Instead, a strenuous consultation process is required to keep the people in control of all relevant decisions.
The United States Congress is more than likely the most significant representative institution in the United States government. Each member of Congress has a primary obligation to the district, to his or her constituency. Though Congress is divided into two parts, called the House of Representatives and the Senate, they both play different roles in the legislature process. Senate is more deliberative and the House is the more centralized and organized. Congress is supposed to represent the American people but they will not always make the “right” decisions, according to some individuals. Obviously it is impossible to please everybody, but surely the laws that are being passed are because Congress views some sort of usefulness from it. There are two different types of representation that was spoken about in the chapter including sociological and agency representation. Sociological is based off of the idea that if two individuals have similar background, character, interests, and perspectives, then they can correctly represent others’ views. Agency is when a representative is held accountable to a constituency for when that constituency is represented poorly. The constituents have the power to hire and fire their representatives.
Of the many interest groups that have a viable, unwavering presence in both the campaign and election process and in the hands of its taxpaying voters is the National Rifle Association (NRA). The nonprofit organization has a staunch and straightforward message: to advocate and protect the second amendment. As of late, the NRA has received criticism by some candidate who is running for presidency, and even the President himself, but this has not changed the purpose or image of the organization through the eyes of the American people. Other candidates can see this, and they are in full fledge of their support for the NRA, which is not only cohesive but reciprocal, and has been one of the standing points for these candidates. Because of this, “Fortune” magazine has recognized NRA as the most powerful lobbying force in the United States. The National Rifle Association is an effective interest group because of its strong advocacy for gun rights, its strong support from taxpayers and politicians, and its notable presence in policy making and legislation.
The organization's opposition to the Brady Bill, a federal handgun law first proposed in 1985, helped to delay its passage for seven years (The NRA Home Page: web). Presently, the NRA lobbies vigorously for the passage of state laws allowing citizens to carry concealed weapons. Furthermore, the NRA has warred to enact legislation in 13 states prohibiting lawsuits against gun manufactures for the misuse of their products. Just this October, a Cincinnati judge dismissed one such lawsuit. The defense, of course, was assisted by the NRA (The NRA Home Page: web).
“The rifle itself has no moral stature, since it has no will of its own. Naturally, it may be used by evil men for evil purposes, but there are more good men than evil, and while the latter cannot be persuaded to the path of righteousness by propaganda, they can certainly be corrected by good men with rifles.” The right to bear arms has been in the constitution since its creation. The NRA, National Rifle Association, has been trying to protect those rights in the current society in which we live in. The group was created in 1871, by two Union service members, Col William C. Church and Gen. George Wingate. They created this organization to help people shoot their guns correctly. Since their creation, the group has evolved into a national organization
One key debate among the authors is what is actually influenced by lawmaking. On one hand, Hansen (1991) takes the perspective that lobbying influences the relationship between interest groups and lawmakers. Hansen bases his argument on the belief that because legislators want to be reelected and they lack information about the “issue preferences of their constituents, the salience of issues to their constituents, and the effectiveness of various policy options,” they will seek information to reduce this uncertainty. The service that interest groups provide the, is this information. Certain interest groups, Hansen argues have “competitive advantage,” (p. 13) in the sense that they can provide certainty about constituent beliefs in an efficient and effective manner, in order to help lawmakers get reelected. Given that elections re-occur, an additional point Hansen makes is for interest groups to have some kind of influence over lawmakers, the conditions that provide this competitive advantage must be expected to recur. When these conditions are met, interest groups
People are important for the success of democracy. After electing their representatives, some individuals wish to be more involved in legislative decisions that affect them, so they take to lobbying and joining interest groups. This often provides them with an atmosphere of individuals who think like they do, while also allowing them to play more of a role than just voting for a few people to represent them. Lobbying and interest groups also allow for issues to be brought to the attention of the legislature and provide a way for these groups to talk to the legislators, whether it is over dinner or at a concert. By voicing their opinions and placing pressures on the legislation, these groups have become successful in fighting for their passions and their views on important
Opponents of gun control laws, including organizations such as the National Rifle Association (NRA), object to the inconvenience these laws may cause to law-abiding gun buyers or owners and would not prevent the possession of guns by criminals. The NRA argues that about half of all United Stated families own at least one gun, and that the most frequent motives for owning a gun is to protect the home, hunting or target shooting, and for collecting. Those who oppose restrictions on gun ownership find support in the language of the Second Amendment and believe that it should be interpreted to guarantee citizens free access to fire arms. The NRA has strenuously lobbied for the passage of state laws allowing citizens to carry concealed weapons. In arguing that the Second Amendment gives citizens the right to bear arm, the NRA argues that the Fourteenth Amendment enforces the Second (3). The Fourteenth Amendment states:
Interest groups and advocacy groups have an undeniably strong influence in Washington, and while the results of lobbying efforts are not often touted, they sway policy in areas like energy, housing, public finance, education, gun control and many more. These interest groups may represent parochial interests, but there is surely an area of policy that matches most splintered-off factions. While they’ve been portrayed as shadowy forces in lawmaking, “Interest Group Influence on US Policy Change: An Assessment Based on Policy History” by Matt Grossmann attempts to quantify and
In “Political Representation,” Shapiro et al. (2009) say that “political representation lies at the core of modern politics.” Representation is usually linked to the concept of democracy (Shapiro et al. 2009). The concept of representation is explicitly mentioned in the U.S. Constitution (U.S. Const. art. I, § 1, 2). However, the meaning and appropriate form of “representation” have been debated by political theorists and philosophers for centuries. The definition of representation one chooses to use is influenced by the form of representation one finds most appropriate. Given the different forms of representation, legislators can be responsive in different ways. Representation also operates at two different levels – the national and local