Groups of people who try to influence legislators and public officials in supporting a particular cause are called lobbyists. With backgrounds in law, politics, public speaking, public affairs or communications, these lobbyists are great at persuading decision makers into voting in their favor. Here are some frequently asked questions about lobbyists:
What Do Lobbyists Do? Lobbyists, whether via legislative government or awareness, voice their opinions on a variety of topics at state houses, courtrooms and judicial offices. These groups and organizations may comprise private sector individuals and advocacy groups who make it their mission to get laws passed in accordance with their political or environmental agendas. They hold meetings, work closely with members of Congress and do research on ways to get funding approval.
What Professionals are Lobby Groups Comprised Of? Anyone from attorneys and educators to special interest groups and public affairs firms can be part of a lobbyist group. Public policy-focused lawyers possess intricate knowledge of the law and how it works, often serving as special counsel to politicians. Some focus on lobbying for large financial institutions, while others focus on foreign governments or trade associations. Special interest groups are comprised of a group of people who share the same beliefs. Some may focus on enforcing greater gun control, while others focus on limiting the power of tobacco companies.
What Skills are Necessary to Become a Lobbyist? A desire to make change is imperative in this field. One must have talents for persuasion, skilled at public relations and communications. It is also helpful to have a background in law, with a network of connections in high places.
Lobbyists are members of a political group who work toward a common goal regarding a particular issue. The most common tactic used by lobbyists is attempting to influence legislators to work toward meeting the lobby group’s goal. By following legislators, waiting for lawmakers to enter, or leave, a session held by their particular legislative branch, lobbyists rely on direct action to achieve their goals. Lobbyists prefer making attempts to directly affect lawmaking rather than sit by idly while decisions are made for them. Lobby groups exist for all issues affecting the country including healthcare reform, gay marriage, and education. Private citizens, who are affected by certain issues, are able to join larger lobby groups to take action for change that will meet their needs. Lobby groups produce change by directly influencing the key decision makers of a country to vote on legislation that is in the lobbyists’ best interest. Lobbyists work together for change and to increase the size of the lobby group to grow into a powerful political force. As the lobby group grows, members will be able to accomplish more, and the likelihood of change in their favor will increase. Information regarding joining a lobby group is available online, via lobby group websites and social networking pages. If you truly wish to join a lobby group a great method of discovering their tactics and goals is to participate in a meeting. Before joining a lobby group it is important to be certain that you share their interests and will fight with them to achieve a common goal.