Advocacy groups have always played a significant role in the American political and social systems

Advocacy groups have always played a significant role in the American political and social systems. These groups hold certain interests and proceed these interests through the political process. Sierra Club, Alzheimer’s Impact Movement, and American Civil Liberties Union are some of the advocacy groups that can be said to represent my personal interests. These groups are working to defend and preserve the individual rights, environment of the earth and the issues related to health.
The advocacy or special interest groups can clearly be considered “factions”. According to Madison, factions are groups of people that share a common interest and come together either to work against the public interest or in favor of a community’s interest. This definition can be applied both to the political parties and interest groups in the United States. Madison believed that these factions would ignore the public interests and their very existence could bring instability to the democracy as the legislators would be influenced by these factions. Madison suggested that a representative democracy would be the best solution to prevent the damages of a faction. Instead of limiting and controlling the factions, they should be allowed to thrive and compete against each other. In this way, the factions would not form a majority and would not be able to influence the republic representatives.
It is a known fact that individuals, acting alone can never persuade the legislators to vote on certain legislation. So they associate themselves with the groups that possess the likewise opinions and interests and if we look at the modern political system, the concerns of Madison have proved to be true as the factions now are controlling the politics. There are numerous groups in America including the Republican and the Democratic parties, the major factions, which are supported by various interest groups. Some of these interest groups strive to influence the policies while others work to prevent a bill from being passed. Moreover, these factions are also said to be protected by the 1st Amendment. The right to speech and association has somewhat given protection to the interest groups to finance the politics and they are using it for their own benefits.
However, there is a need to place limitations on the activities of special interest groups. All interest groups should be strictly regulated, the lobbying activities should be monitored closely, and the amount of money these groups contribute to a candidate should be reduced to a certain extent in order to reduce the influence of special interest groups on American politics.