Iron Triangle / Interest Groups Extra Credit Assignment

| March 29, 2017

Question
Iron Triangle / Interest Groups Extra Credit Assignment

Completion of this assignment will earn you up to thirty (30) points towards your final grade.

Procedure/Sequence

First, go tohttp://www.auburn.edu/~johnspm/gloss/pork-barrel_legislation.html to get the

definition for iron triangles, interest groups, pluralist theory, and elite theory. Rewrite these

definitions into your own words.

Select one committee your US Representative is assigned to; find out who your US

Representative is through this website:http://www.house.gov/. Use theFind Your

Representativesection in the upper left corner. From there, go to your representative’s page,

and search for their committee assignments under the “About (Your Representative’s

Name)” heading on the page.

Select one committee that either Michigan senator is assigned to: Debbie Stabenowhttp://

stabenow.senate.gov/?p=committee_assignmentsor Carl Levinhttp://levin.senate.gov/

senate/committees/

Then, go to this website that deals with the background on committees:http://

www.opensecrets.org/cmteprofiles/index.asp.Once there, look at one committee from the

House that your US Representative is assigned to and one from the Senate that either

Michigan senator is assigned to. Go to the summary of the committee and write down the

following:

1. What is the jurisdiction of each committee?

2. Who are the chair and ranking minority person on each committee and to which party

do they each belong?

3. What is the proportion of Democrats to Republicans on each committee?

4. Look at the members of that committee: are there any particular states that are being

represented on the committees?

5. Which special interests are affected by the committees?

6. Which special interests have contributed financially to the elections of members of thesecommittees?

7. Which agencies are regulated by these committees?

8. Using the information you have already found, construct an iron triangle with eachcommittee.

9. Determine if there are interest groups that have conflicting goals affected by each

committee.

10.Looking at your iron triangles and your other research for this project, do you think pluralistor elite theory is more prevalent in the committee structure and their dealings with interestgroups? Why do you believe that? Provide examples to support your opinion.

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