’Nonstop’ political races blur lines between governing and running

WASHINGTON, DC: While rising activity in government affairs and grassroots organizing may provide PR agencies with a wealth of opportunity, a study being assembled by the American Enterprise Institute (AEI) suggests that lengthy campaigns are in fact hurting the American form of representative government.

WASHINGTON, DC: While rising activity in government affairs and grassroots organizing may provide PR agencies with a wealth of opportunity, a study being assembled by the American Enterprise Institute (AEI) suggests that lengthy campaigns are in fact hurting the American form of representative government.

WASHINGTON, DC: While rising activity in government affairs and

grassroots organizing may provide PR agencies with a wealth of

opportunity, a study being assembled by the American Enterprise

Institute (AEI) suggests that lengthy campaigns are in fact hurting the

American form of representative government.



In The Permanent Campaign, the AEI will argue that the virtually nonstop

campaigning process blurs the line between campaigning and

governing.



The final version of the study is due next summer.



University of Kansas political scientist Burdett Loomis, who is writing

a chapter on ’Interest Group and Issue Advocacy Campaigning,’ suggested

that the overreliance on campaign techniques often places undue

limitations on the debate that takes place in legislative chambers.



’So much of the campaign and PR techniques tend to work against

deliberation,’ he explained. ’They tend to get people to focus in a

campaign-oriented way, rather than give them space to negotiate.’



As an example, Loomis points to the high-performance PR efforts that

have played key roles in determining the outcomes of legislative battles

involving the Clinton administration’s healthcare and HMO reform

efforts.



According to AEI’s newsletter, another part of the study will examine

how the reliance on ’sharply ideological and media-driven campaigns’ has

displaced the ’personal’ relationships that candidates and elected

officials used to have with their constituents.



Ketchum Public Affairs president John Paluzsek, however, contended that

new communications methods hold the potential to bring about an

’improved’ system of representative government: ’We can use those modern

media tools to inform the public, who can also use those tools to inform

their representatives.’



Other experts set to author chapters include Thomas Mann, the Brookings

Institution’s director of governmental studies.



Have you registered with us yet?

Register now to enjoy more articles and free email bulletins

Register
Already registered?
Sign in

Would you like to post a comment?

Please Sign in or register.