The weekend debate: Lobbying

Here’s your starter for ten in our weekend slot where we throw up an idea or thought for debate…

It has been a week of scandal surrounding the lobbying industry, with The Independent publishing a series of stories based around the claims of the lobbying firm Bell Pottinger to be able to influence government policy.

The consultants at Bell Pottinger made claims to undercover reporters that they had already influenced government policy and could do so again for a fee. The government initially responded by saying these claims were rubbish but later conceded that lobbying from companies did have some impact.

So who’s right? Does lobbying work or is it a waste of time and money? And if it does work is this undermining our democracy or a fair way for organisations to help get their views heard?

Post your comments below…

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3 Comments

  • Lib Dem Member 11th Dec '11 - 10:07am

    Yes. Plus, I heard of one group of lobbyists that got local people to write to government and other public authorities demanding changes to how various services are delivered. The group knocked on doors soliciting support from residents, put a lot of promotional materials through doors and was always in the local papers. It used to brag about how it had got the council to be more supportive of the local football team. The group in question was a Lib Dem Focus Team.

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