Congress itself passed a stimulus package the largesr single spending bill in

Congress itself passed a stimulus package the largesr

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Congress itself passed a "stimulus package," the largesr single spending bill in the nation's history" Incrementalism was abandoned. GROUP THEORY: POLICY AS EOUILIBRIUM IN THE GROUP STRUGGLE Group theory begins with the proposition that interaction among groups is the central fact of politics.2 Individuals with common interests band together formally or informally ro press their demands on govemment. According to political scientist David Tiuman, an in[erest group is "a shared-attitude group that makes certain claims upon other goups in the society"l such a group becomes political *if and when it makes a claim through or upon any of the institutions of gov- emment."3 Individuals are important in politics only when they act as part of, or on behalf of, group interests. The group becomes the essential bridge berween the individual and the govemment. Politics is really the struggle among groups to influence public policy. The task of the political system is to monage group conflicr by (1) establishing rules of the game in the group struggle, (2) ananging compromises and balancing inter- ests, (3) enacting compromises in the form of public policy, and (4) enforcing these compromises. According to $oup theorists, public policy at any given time is the equilibrium reached in the group struggle (see Figure 2-4). This equilibrium is determined by the relative influence of various inter- est groups. Changes in the relative influence of any interest group can be expected to result in changes in public policy; policy will move in the direction desired by the groups gaining influence and away from the desires of groups losing influence. The influence of Incrementalism: Apptying the Model SpeciaI attention to incrementatism is given in the discussion of government budgeting in Chapter 10, "Economic Policy: Chattenging Incrementalism." Group Theory: Apptying the Model Throughout this votume we wi[[ describe struggtes over public poticy. In Chapter 9, "Education: Group Struggles," we wi[[ examine group con- flict over pubtic potiry in the discus- sions of education and school issues. In Chapter 77, "Tax Policy: Battling Speciat Interests," we wi[[ observe the power of interest groups in obtain- ing special treatments in the tax code and obsbucting efforls to reform the nation's tax [aws.
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Added Influence \ \ \ Elite Theory: Poticy as Etite preference 23 lnfluence of Group A I I I Influence of Group B Public Policy Alternative Policy Positions Policy Change Equilibrium flGURE 2-4 The Group Model The group model assumes that public poticy is a batance of interest group influence; policies change when parLicular interest groups gain or lose influence. groups is determined by their numbers, wealth, organizational strength, leadership, access to deci- sion makers, and internal cohesion.4 The whole interest group system-the political system itsel is held rogether in equilibrium by several forces. First, there is a large, nearly universal, Iatent group in American societythat sup.
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  • Fall '19
  • Prof. Madya Dr. Norhayati Binti Daud

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