I'm confused about the following American Government interest group questions.
1. An interest group lobbying, coalitions are: a. informal arrangements b. temporary c. formed only for the purpose of lobbying on a single issue or d. all of the above
2. Since the 1980s, organized labor's share of the workforce has somewhat increased. True or False?
3. Since 1974, the number of independent, or non-connected, PACs has declined sharply. True or False?
4. The largest portion of PAC dollars spent on candidates for national office comes from corporations, trade association, and other business groups. True or False?
5. Groups using legal advocacy seek to influence policy through pleading their case to individual congressional representatives. True or False?
6. The Children's Defense Fund, the Community Nutrition Institute, and the Food Research and Action Committee are citizen groups. True or False?
The best answer to question 1 is D, that all of the other statements are true. By most definitions, interest group coalitions can be formal or informal, but they do tend to be temporary and they are formed for the purpose of lobbying on a single issue. These are coalitions of interest groups that do not necessarily share all of the same policy goals, but which come together formally or informally to create a larger group to lobby on a particular topic.
The statement in Question 2 is most definitely false. Union membership has declined dramatically since the 1980s. This is due in part to globalization and in part to a more conservative attitude on the part of the American people.
The statement in Question 3 is also false. Non-connected PACs are the fastest-growing kind of PAC. This is particularly true now that independent PACs have greater freedom to raise and spend money to support political candidates.
The statement in Question 4 is true. At this point, PACs that are associated with big businesses and other business groups dominate the spending on national candidates. This makes sense because big businesses and other business groups will clearly have the most money and will therefore be able to spend more than citizens’ groups. This source tells us that at least 16 of the top 20 PACs in terms of money donated to candidates are connected to businesses.
The statement in Question 5 is false. Groups that use a strategy of legal advocacy can also try to lobby members of Congress, but that is a separate strategy. Legal advocacy does not involve lobbying. Instead, it uses the courts to try to advance the group’s agenda. Therefore, this statement is false.
The statement in Question 6 is true. Citizen groups can be defined as groups that are made up of concerned citizens and which are not attached to businesses or other large institutions. The groups named fit this description.