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Pressure group activity gives people hope that they can make a difference. The ruling class would rather that people put their energies into pressure group activities, which do not question the fundamentals of the system than into political activity, which seriously challenges the right of the elite to govern.
Pressure groups enable new concerns and issues to reach the political agenda, thereby facilitating social progress and preventing social stagnation.
For example, the women’s and environmentalist movements.
The Influence of Pressure Groups on the Government This essay will outline the significance to which pressure groups have an influence on government and explain how they have fared under New Labour governments.
Whilst the term ‘pressure groups’ may be relatively new, the concept itself dates back as far as 1787.
The intention of the group is to raise the profile or the cause and/or advance it.
Unlike political Insider groups will regularly be consulted by the government.This consultative role is built up if a group has demonstrated a number of features: Authority – the ability of the group to speak on behalf of all of its members.Information – the group has expertise and information on a specific subject.Democracy is a system of government where decisions are arrived at by majoritarian principles with representatives elected at periodic elections where political equality and political freedom allow the voter an effective choice between competing candidates in a secret ballot. In the pluralist model of democracy, pressure groups play an essential role.Political parties cannot provide adequate representation for the full range of diverse interests and opinions in a modern democracy because their key function is to aggregate interests into a coherent political entity capable of governing the country.Pluralists believe that pressure groups overcome the democratic deficit that builds up as most people’s political participation is to cast a vote every five years, this leading to people having little or no influence over decisions made between elections, and minority views not being represented.Pressure groups increase participation and access to the political system, thereby enhancing the quality of democracy.Pressure groups are formal (Insider) and informal (Outsider) associations whose goals are to further the interests of a specific section of the society to promote a particular cause by influencing the decisions of the government.An insider group is a pressure group which is very involved in the decision making of policies e.g. An outsider group is a pressure who is not associated with decision making as they like to assert their independence and lack political clout e.g. However there are some outsider groups that want to be affiliated and become an insider, but they have not yet been asked by the government e.g. These groups are also known as “Aspiring Insiders”. They present many and different ideas to those who govern.This is a good thing as everyone as a whole is being accepted and a broad range of people’s rights are being considered including minorities.This is very democratic as everyone is accounted for and everyone’s interest are represented in decision making whether you are involved or inactive. This is defined as pluralism, as they spread power more evenly and widely.