Understanding Us/Uk Government and Politics: A Comparative Guide

By Duncan Watts | Go to book overview

9
Pressure groups

Unlike political parties, pressure groups do not aspire to govern the country and
are concerned with a relatively narrow range of issues. Much of their work is non-
political, but in as much as their concerns and aspirations are affected by
government they seek to acquire an influence over the conduct of public policy
.

In this chapter, we are concerned with examining the range of groups in Britain
and the United States, the ways in which they operate and their effectiveness. In
addition, we consider the changes in pressure-group activity on both sides of the
Atlantic over the last two or three decades
.


POINTS TO CONSIDER
What are the differences between movements and pressure groups, and what are the distinctive characteristics of New Social Movements?
Why have single-issue groups become so much more significant in recent years?
In what respects does lobbying of the Executive branch differ in Britain and the United States?
Which access points are most important in British and American politics, and why?
Distinguish between iron triangles and policy networks.
Why have some groups resorted to direct action in recent decades?
Do pressure groups make a positive contribution to British and American democracy?

-219-

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Understanding Us/Uk Government and Politics: A Comparative Guide
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents v
  • The Politics Association viii
  • Political Leaders of the Post-1945 Era ix
  • 1: The Context of Political Life in Britain and the United States 1
  • 2: Constitutions 26
  • 3: Protecting Liberties, Advancing Rights 46
  • 4: Executives 66
  • 5: Legislatures 106
  • 6: Judiciaries 139
  • 7: Governance Beyond the Centre 155
  • 8: Political Parties 178
  • 9: Pressure Groups 219
  • 10: The Mass Media 243
  • 11: Voting and Elections 269
  • 12: Democracy in Theory and Practice 305
  • Index 329
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