Why Are Some Pressure Groups More Successful Than Others?

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Why are some pressure groups more successful than others? A pressure group is a group of people with specific aims and interests. Also known as interest groups, lobby groups or protest groups, they try to influence political decision makers such as MPs and councillors to influence local or national policy and/or legislation. They seek to do so, either to protect interests of members (e.g. Trade Unions, NUT) or promote a cause (e.g. Greenpeace or RSPCA). Not all pressure groups are as successful as others, and there are many reasons for this. One important area which determines the pressure group success is whether they have a good relationship with the government, or relevant authority (e.g. local council). Insider pressure groups (such…show more content…
Moreover, different tactics are used by pressure groups, which can add to the success of the group as a whole. Paid political consultants offer to act as intermediaries between pressure groups and parliament. Lobbyists have three main functions. Firstly, to provide groups with political information and secondly to bring groups into contact with MPs or officials and vice versa. Thirdly, to persuade MPs or officials to back a particular issue or cause. For example, The ‘Snowdrop Campaign’ in 1996 used lobbying as a tactic to gain support for their ideas. This seemed to be effective, as there was a resulting gun amnesty, where 160,000 guns were handed in. Each pressure group is reliant on the public’s opinion. If the public opinion is good toward a particular issue or group, many MP’s are inclined to listen to the group with public support. For example, equal pay for women. Therefore, public opinion is one of the most important factors in why some pressure groups are more successful than others, Also, if the public widely agree with the cause of a pressure group, the bigger the possible demonstration may be. In conclusion, the evidence above suggests that some pressure groups are more successful than others. There are many different factors that make a pressure group successful, including media coverage, finances, size of group, tactics used, public opinion and relationship with government, therefore a combination of these will ensure that you have a
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