Lecture notes – Class 2

Download Lecture Notes – Class 2 in Adobe Acrobat (.pdf)

Notes from guest speaker, Brad D. Parrott,
Associate Athletic Director, External Affairs at UTSA

  • From the perspective of an in-house lobbyists, there can be winners and losers; in the eyes of AT&T, they won.
  • Working in the media/working for a newspaper is a path to a career lobbying.
  • When considering lobbying targets, it is important to consider elected and appointed officials.
  • When it comes to having impact with elected officials, the line between charitable and political giving is not always clear.
  • At times, it is harder to get five minutes in a Member’s office than it is to get five hours with a Member on a golf course.
  • The example of at&t does not provide a clear answer to what works in advocacy; did they really win or did they merely acquire all of the competition?
  • There is a prohibition on Texas State employees lobbying (as part of their State job); however, they can provide information.
  • When seeking funding for a project from a legislative body, it is always helpful to point to local contributions through a tax, new student fee, major private sector donation or other local participation.
  • It is more difficult to control the media than to control a member.
  • There is an argument that relationships can over-ride merit in an advocacy arena.
  • Government affairs advocacy does not require a compromise of personal morals.
  • Who to send and who else are they listening to are key questions in targeting a member.
  • It is a mistake to view a government affairs project through the company eyes only.
  • The Governor’s Office, Lt. Governor’s Office, and Speaker’s Office should all be considered when engaging in advocacy.
  • The basic rules of building relationships are the same rules that apply in lobbying.
  • Corporate political giving is often based on past track record of support.
  • Sending an unskilled or unprepared corporate executive to a committee hearing is a mistake, and most executives do not initially appreciate the danger of showing up unprepared.

Lecture covering topics of this week

The glamour of D.C. (Chapter 1 Andres) – The myths created by TV; The media’s focus on the Abramoff affair masks the true face of the advocacy world.

In 2006 there were twice as many registered lobbyists as six years earlier.  This does not count the legions of media consultants, Internet advocacy advisers, pollsters, grassroots specialists, and political action committee managers..

A bigger lobbying industry neither guarantees better public understanding nor the political omnipotence of interest groups.

An implicit tone in much of the writing, critical of lobbying, is that lobbyist never fail and therefore have too much influence.

The critics of pluralism also cannot account for the rapid growth in the lobbying world and why interest groups continue to invest resources even in losing efforts.

Even though the advocacy industry has grown, it is not necessarily more effective.

– Life in the District and life in the Congressional District

– Money Network

– Relationship Network

– Relationships and their regional implications

– Leveraging regional similarities


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