In What Ways Do Pressure Groups Try and Influence the Government?

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In what ways do Pressure Groups try and influence the Government? (25) A pressure group is defined as a group that tries to influence policy on an interest or for a specific cause. They can be either an Insider group, or an Outsider group, with Insider’s being more respected and being consulted by the current Government. There are many ways in which a Pressure Group can influence Government, such as Direct Action, Lobbying, influencing Government directly, using the media and influencing Political Parties. One way in which pressure groups can influence is by direct action. Often to gain attention for their cause, a pressure group can use the ‘mass protest’. These often take the form of marches, mainly by outsider groups, protesting contentious Government policy, such as the 2m strong “Stop the War coalition” march in February 2003, against the War waged in Iraq. However, other groups, if well organised, such as Trade Unions, can demonstrate through striking. These are often hard to ignore, such as the strike by the NUT in March 2012 over pensions, coupled with their march. Direct action can be an effective way of influencing Government, because even if strikes or marches are unsuccessful in changing policy, they are the best way to gain publicity for a cause. Furthermore, pressure groups also influence Government by using professional Lobbyists. Increasingly now, sectional and cause groups use paid lobbyists to mediate with those in Parliament. These lobbyists are able to provide Pressure Groups with information on different MPs, public officials and civil servants, as well as helping gain support of these people to back a cause. An example of this is when the £5bn UK Nuclear Submarine was handed to the DEVENPORT group, rather than the ROSYTH group, as DEVENPORT had spent millions on the campaign as well as hiring and employing MPs as “consultants”. This is an
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