Lobbyists In Canada Essay, Research Paper
Lobbyist necessary for government reform
Lobbying is a formal and recognized part of the democratic system. Lobbying is any form of direct or indirect communication with the government or its officials designed to influence public policy. A lobbyist is a paid professional who makes his/her living by influencing government. Business firms or various economic and political groups are the most frequent employers of lobbyists (e.g. Tobacco companies). A lobbyist is hired for their expertise and knowledge of government and how it works, also who to address. , In order to have proper government reform, lobbyist are necessary in a democratic society. In order for lobbyist group to be successful they must use different methods (direct or indirect), If they are working for a company they must use the registration act and the down sides to lobbyists is that, the ones with the most money usually control the outcome.
Lobbyists attempt to influence government policy either directly through contact with the government, or indirectly by influencing public opinion, which in turn might affect government decisions.
The direct method could involve letters to the Prime Minister, petitions sent to a Member of Parliament or establishing contact with an important civil servant or politician. Knowing the right person and how to use them is one of the most important ways of getting an organization’s point across. (E.g. the Wambacks crusade to change the Young offenders act, after their son, was beaten in a park for apparent reason.)
“A 19-year-old who steal $500 out of your house will spend more time in jail than a 17-year-old who murders your son.”
“The family received over 600 e-mails from across the country, pushing the total to more 636,000.”
“Once they get 1 million names, they plan to take it to Ottawa, where changes to the Young offenders act are being studied.”
The Wambacks won’t stop until they have changed the young offenders act, they obviously have the support of the public, and therefore they are lobbying the government for proper reform, they are working on behalf of the Canadian population.
“Angry truckers slowed traffic on Highway 401 to a crawl drawing the ire of motorists and a phalanx of police – as protests continued across the country.”
Truck driver’s are angry at the price of diesel and would like the federal government to do something about it. They will hold demonstrations until their problems have been dealt with.
The indirect method is when politicians are very aware of public opinion polls and often consult such polls to establish how the public feels about on certain issues. Pressure groups know that politicians rely on these polls and so many of them spend a great deal of time and effort to influence.
As of 1989 the lobbyists’ registration act requires lobbyists to register with the federal government so that there is a public record of whom is trying to influence policy makers. Under the act, individuals who are paid to communicate with the government for the purpose of influencing policy-makers decisions are considered to be lobbyists. Those who lobby the government on a volunteer basis do not have to register. Although paid lobbyists must register with the government and the government does not regulate their activities.
“A Toronto councilor has quietly proposed major changes to the municipal ethics and purchasing bylaw in a bid to make the wheeling and dealing at City Hall more transparent.”
The Negative aspects to lobbyists are that the ones working for large international corporations, which have a lot of finical, backing usually control the outcome. In the U.S.A lobbyists are a big part of capital hill they are always trying to influence politicians, by adding money to their campaigns, these companies/groups may include the N.R.A (National Rifle Association) or Phillip Morris, who produce Cigarettes. The term you may used to describe this is a bribe. The politician will side with the ones paying for their re-election campaign, if they don’t they won’t get money for their campaign, which could add up to millions.
In conclusion lobbyist are necessary in a democratic society for government reform. By using different methods to show the public about their situation, the government of Canada instating the registration act to protect the smaller lobbyists, and lobbyists can work against the interest of the public, for the interests of large corporations