If the government is considering a law that would damage your business, how would you respond? According to a new poll from the Public Affairs Council (PAC), an overwhelming majority of Americans would attempt to persuade elected officials to change the law to protect their company. These findings challenge the common assertion that Americans don’t […]
UPDATED: Issue Analysis No. 1: Do Taxpayer-Funded Campaigns Reduce Lobbyist and Special Interest Influence?
Note: This report is an updated version of an Issue Analysis originally published by the Center for Competitive Politics in March 2008. This version has been edited to include data from five additional years in Arizona (2008 – 2012) and six additional years in Maine (2008 – 2013). Beginning with the 2000 election cycle, Arizona and […]
Filed Under: Lobbying, Research, Tax Financed Campaigns Handouts, Tax Financed Campaigns Research, Tax Financed Campaigns State, Tax-Financing, Taxpayer Financed Campaigns, Lobbying, Lobbying, Taxpayer Financed Campaigns, Arizona, Maine
In this essay, Stephen Ansolabehere recommends a shift in focus, away from normative claims and toward using money in politics as a tool for understanding the distribution of political power. He shares several of the more important findings from research in this direction and downplays the return on lobbying investment, characterizing it as “modest, at […]
In this article, John C. Scott analyzes the interaction of interest groups and how they benefit each other within the retirement policy lobbying realm. Scott argues that interest groups find it mutually beneficial to belong to a network of similarly interested organizations as these networks reduce the costs for government agents when they are tasked […]
Grassroots lobbying is any effort to organize, coordinate or implore others to contact public officials in order to affect public policy. Through grassroots lobbying, like‐minded citizens can alert elected officials to constituents’ preferences, educate fellow citizens and make their voices heard, and even persuade the public to adopt new views. In short, grassroots lobbying is quintessential representative democracy in action. However, as this report documents, sweeping lobbying laws in 36 states threaten to strangle grassroots movements in red tape and bureaucratic regulation. Twenty‐two states explicitly include grassroots lobbying in the definition of lobbying, while another 14 consider any attempt to influence public policy to be lobbying, as long as a certain amount is spent. Thus, such common activities as publishing an open letter, organizing a demonstration or distributing flyers can trigger regulation and force organizers to register with the state and file detailed reports on their activities, as well as the identities of supporters. These regulations raise the costs of political activity and set legal traps for unsuspecting citizens, thus making it more difficult for ordinary citizens to participate in politics-all with little or no benefit to the public. These findings suggest elected officials should listen to constituent concerns or debate ideas in the open, rather than mowing down the grassroots with regulation.
Filed Under: Issue Advocacy, Lobbying, Research, grassroots, lobbying, lobbyist, milyo, primo, Disclosure, Lobbying, Disclosure, Lobbying, Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, Wisconsin, Wyoming
This CCP report that examines the number of lobbyist registrations in Arizona and Maine, the two states with the longest running public financing programs. Advocates for taxpayer financed campaigns often argue that their programs remove the threat of special interest influence, and presumably the number of lobbyists, but this research shows no relationship between taxpayer financed campaigns and the number of registered lobbyists.
The following is a CCP analysis of the effort in New York to overhaul their campaign finance regulations.
The Center for Competitive Politics published two policy primers on grassroots advocacy. They detail the incompatible relationship between regulating grassroots activity and reforming the lobbying industry and addresses the Consitutional protections of anonymous grassroots activism.
Text of H.R. 2093, the grassroots lobbying disclosure proposal introduced by former Representative Marty Meehan (D-MA) in the 110th Congress.
This paper uses data from the 1995 Lobby Disclosure Act to assess the argument that PAC contributions are used to gain access to legislators.