Lobbying Together

cover art
192 pp., 6 x 9
ISBN: 9780878407217 (0878407219)

April 1999
LC: 98-44648

American Governance and Public Policy series



Lobbying Together
Interest Group Coalitions in Legislative Politics
Kevin W. Hula

Winner of the 2000 Emerging Scholar Award of the American Political Science Association

Today organized interests fight most of their major battles within coalitions. Whether joining forces to address tobacco legislation or proposed air safety regulations, Washington lobbyists with seemingly little in common are combining their clout to get results.

Kevin Hula here examines why coalition strategies have emerged as a dominant lobbying technique, when lobbyists use them, and how these strategies affect their activities. His is the first book to focus on the formation and use of coalitions by lobbyists, examining the broader scope of interest group coalitions and explaining their roles as institutions of collective leadership, bargaining, and strategy for member organizations.

Combining collective action theory with data gleaned from 130 interviews with lobbyists and interest group leaders in the fields of transportation, education, and civil rights, Hula explores how the use of coalitions differs at various stages of the policy process and with different activities. In the course of his study, he also shows how the communications revolution is changing interest group tactics.

The single most detailed work available on this subject, Lobbying Together offers scholars and students alike a fresh and accessible look at this increasingly important factor in the policy process.

Kevin W. Hula is an assistant professor of political science at Loyola College in Maryland.

Barry Rabe, Series Editor
"An interesting and empirically sound study of interest group coalitions on Capitol Hill.… The book is filled with findings that are both theoretically interesting and potentially useful for political operatives."—Perspectives on Political Science

"In this very welcome book Hula addresses a real void in the literature on interest groups by analyzing the general idea of interest coalitions. While other studies have examined various forms of group interaction in one or more policy domains, Hula sticks to the subject of coalitions with audacity and does so very thoroughly indeed . . . Methodologically the study is well grounded . . . Recommended for all levels."—Choice

"Lobbying Together is cleverly conceived, carefully constructed and empirically rich. It successfully replaces our old notions of relatively solitary interest groups working at cross-purposes with an up-to-date view of shifting coalitions, explaining not only why and how strange bedfellows get together, but why they do not stay in bed for long."—David C. King, professor of public policy, Harvard University

"An outstanding study of interest group coalitions. What particularly impresses me is Hula's research on the incentive structure underlying coalition formation. Building on his extensive interviews, Hula develops an explanation of how coalition brokers overcome the collective action problem. This is an important and timely book."—Jeffrey M. Berry, professor of political science, Tufts University