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Interest Groups and Citizen Participation

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Provide an explanation of how interest groups impact policy process. Then, describe the extent to which interest group lobbying has diminished or increased over the last two presidential administrations. Explain the basis for your impressions. Then, explain whether interest group activity should be curtailed by federal legislation and why or why not. Include in your explanation how curtailing the power of interest groups might be beneficial or harmful for American democracy.

Also, in her classic essay of 1969, Sherry R. Arnstein suggested a typology of American citizens participation in their government. Intentionally provocative, her typology attempts to explain opportunities for, and barriers to, civic engagement among citizens with power and those without. It provides an excellent context for citizen participation, and you can draw upon Arnsteins example to understand the implications of citizen participation on the development of public policy.
Review Arnsteins, A Ladder of Citizen Participation and reflect on how this typology has been demonstrated in presidential administrations and in the development of public policy. Provide an explanation of how Arnsteins typology has been demonstrated in the last two presidential administrations. Provide two examples to illustrate your views. Then, explain at least two implications of citizen participation on the development of public policy or platforms.

Readings
1. Hudson, W. E. (2013). American democracy in peril: Eight challenges to Americas future (7th ed.). Thousand Oaks, CA: CQ Press. Chapter 4, The Fourth Challenge: Citizen Participation (pp. 139-173)

2. Shafritz, J. M., Lane, K. S., & Borick, C. P. (Eds.). (2005). Classics of public policy. New York, NY: Pearson Education.
– Chapter 3, Interests Groups and Public Policy The Governmental Process (1951) (pp. 83-87)
– Chapter 4, Agenda Setting The Dynamics of Agenda-Building (1972) (pp. 128-136)

3. Arnstein, S. R. (1969). A ladder of citizen participation. Journal of the American Institute of Planners,35(4), 216-224. doi:10.1080/01944366908977225 Retrieved from the Walden Library databases.

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