In democratic countries, especially the US, the people can express their preferences even after the elections by directly contacting the officials they elected concerning specific issues. Most of these activities in the United States are carried out by organized and enduring efforts coordinated by special interest groups, which brings together individuals with a common goal to seek collective action from elected officials. Special interest groups are associations whose members have shared concerns and attempt to influence government policies that impact these specific concerns (Lowi et al, 2013). While elected officials often complain that special interests have undue influence on US politics, interest groups work closely with the administration and Congress in drafting policy initiatives and legislation. In addition, they also provide the public and the government with information on an array of issues, while also substantially contributing to political campaigns. In recent years, there has been a significant increase in the number special interest groups, especially with almost all segments of society in the US represented by a special interest group (Lowi et al, 2013).
One way of classifying special interest groups is by the groups they represent. Some groups are directly interested in economic policies taken by the government and get their support from producers and manufacturers in specific sectors of the economy, such as the National Federation of Independent Business that represents owners of small businesses (Lowi et al, 2013).