The Role of Special Interest Groups in American Politics
Like political parties, pressure groups can be considered another system that connects the citizen more directly to government. However, at the same instant there are marked differences in both composition and function that define interest groups as different entities from larger political parties. According to V.O. Key Jr. in a composition appropriately entitled Pressure Groups; pressure groups "Ordinarily... concern themselves with only a narrow range of policies;" and unlike the goals of political parties, their intentions are to "influence the content of public policy rather than the results of elections." Nevertheless, it is a realized fact that special interest groups with a mass membership are considered to be congregations with enough power to affect election results and "pressure party leaders, legislators, and others in official position to act in accord with their wishes..."
Although it is accepted that pressure groups indeed pressure politics in certain directions, it is quite a different task to describe how pressure groups link public opinion to government action.…
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