be exempted, then neither should any other sector of the industry, save milk, the League reasoned.33
One theme running through these pleas was the necessity of holding down prices, unless deputies were willing to be exposed to a political cross-fire from the voters. As a result, the deputies counseled the ministers or acted in committee to provide for exemptions, even though these would result in revenue losses.
One regional fruit growers' association even requested its deputy to intercede personally with Seebohm, but the minister, unimpressed by the threat of higher prices, refused to make any concession. From a political viewpoint, he made a mistake in not yielding to the fruit growers, who were powerful in the area where his party also had political power. But from an economic viewpoint, he feared opening up a Pandora's box if he publicly supported one exemption.34
This study of interest group pressure in the legislative realm highlights once again certain central themes recurring in the analysis of transport legislation: (1) Interest groups could not apply maximum pressure on the Bundestag, owing to their internal divisions. (2) The cleavage among them re-____________________