Lecture notes – Class 3

Download Lecture Notes – Class 3 in Adobe Acrobat (.pdf)

Notes from guest speaker, Gary Andres,
Vice Chairman of Public Policy and Research at Dutko Worldwide

  • The lobbying business has a bad name because of the way the press covers the job; that is a bad rap.
  • Lobbying is merely a form of First Amendment expression; most individuals are represented by one or more lobbying organization (trade associations, AARP, and others).
  • When corporations share lobbyists, just working “one side of the aisle” is a mistake; the client benefits from this approach.
  • The best lobbying campaigns are the ones that follow the model of political campaigns; this includes a strategy for advertising as well as earned media; a good lobbying campaign is based on research (test message before selling message).
  • Washington, DC is a place with a 24-hour news cycle; a place with a wealth of information but a poverty of attention. That is where a variety of tools come in to use.
  • The focus on access, to the exclusion of other facets, can be a mistake many corporation make.? The media gives this area too much attention.? When you are thinking of hiring, look at a broader array of tools.? Keep the campaign mentality; loosing focus contributes to failure.
  • He wrote the book to capture the changes in the lobbying industry. The previously written materials were off the mark. One has to get beyond the influence image of lobbying to understand.
  • The “real lobbying world” is not uni-dimensional. Lobbying does not drive the process; it is just part of the process.
  • How to count lobbyist is not precise; some lobbying activities requires registration; other activities do not require registration.
  • Structural complexity – lobbying is more than meeting a Senator for dinner and getting him or her to say yes before desert.? Getting a Member to say yes is very complex today.
  • What lobbyist “do” needs a more complete look – it includes information gathering of many other areas.? A lot of the work is more in the area of information gathering sphere.
  • Reverse lobbying is also part of the landscape today; much of what happens includes lawmakers asking for interest group support.? Think of lobbying as a way to support legislative activities that is not available otherwise.
  • As long as government continues to grow and be complex to shape the economy and environment, there is going to be a growing need and demand for lobbyist.? When government shrinks (if ever) then lobbying will contract.
  • Political Action Committees (PACs) are something the government created through unintended consequences; in the 1970s, there were reforms to limit contributions from certain groups, stop reimbursements of certain contributions, and other limits; PACs were a vehicle to legally collect money and make contributions.

Lecture covering topics of this week

  • Lobbying is the second oldest profession
  • “Even as the lobbying industry has changed dramatically in structure, style, and substantive methods since the 1970s, its public perceptions have not.” Andres page 26
  • Why the perceptions endure: misunderstanding, press characterizations, political/campaign characterizations.? Andres page 27
  • “The anti-pluralist school of thought has advanced the idea that private interests always trump the public interest, and that lobbyists usually win at the expense of ordinary citizens.” Andres page 29
  • “Working with a group representing an entire industry made it much easier for government policymakers to reach a collection of companies in key industries such as raw materials, natural resources, or transportation.? This is a familiar theme through the history of lobbying – government growth produces more interest group activity.”? Andres page 31
  • Technical solutions can be advanced with industry input. Andres page 36-39
  • “The dirty little secret about high priced Washington lobbyists is ? they lose a lot.”? Andres page 41
  • Know the legislative process ? opportunities for success – committee structure, chain of command, parliamentary procedures, etc.?(Chapter 4 – Andres)
  • “Few would consider a full-time policy analyst churning out issue briefs about energy markets, or a researcher focusing on the best way to cover the uninsured, a part of the lobbying world.”? Andres page 67
  • Focus on the changes in the legislative and executive branches of government outlined on page 67 of Andres.
  • Focus on the consequences of these transformations on lobbying and interest groups outlined on page 68 of Andres.
    • Proliferation of Subcommittees
    • Growth of Staff
    • The dramatic change in lobbying and politics; action and counteraction were constant.?
    • Orthodox versus unorthodox law making
    • Decay of the seniority system as the basis of power
    • Austin 1985 and today
  • Note the 2003 Session of the Texas Legislature and the actions relating to redistricting as covered in pages 97 and 96 in Keith and Haag.
  • Understand the basic landscape of the Texas Legislative Branch of Government (pages 102 – 133).
    • Cooperative versus competitive environment: those that trash others versus building teams
    • Which has more power, the politician or the lobbyist?


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