PRAD 255 - Module 10 - PR in Politics and Government - part 1


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Principles of Public Relations  Ragas Politics and Government (Part 1)

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Government Relations and Lobbying Government relations (also called public affairs): a specialized area of PR that involves monitoring government activities that may affect an organization and disseminating information about the organization’s position on issues Government relations professionals not only work for corporations, but may also work for trade and industry associations and even nonprofit groups Lobbyist: more specialized function than government relations. Lobbyists direct their efforts to trying to defeat, pass, or amend proposed legislation and regulatory agency policies There are over 30,000 lobbyists in Washington D.C. The lobby of the Willard Hotel in DC Ulysses S. Grant

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Top Five Lobbying Groups in Washington D.C. It is not only big business that actively lobbies; hundreds of special interest groups also play an important role in the policymaking process!

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Regulations on Lobbying Congress updated its rules on lobbying in 2007 Lawmakers and aides are not allowed to accept gifts or trips No discounted rides or free trips on private planes are allowed Lawmakers must disclose the names of lobbyists who raise $15,000 or more in contributions Free lunches and dinners are not allowed. Light appetizers and drinks are okay (the toothpick rule!) Jack Abramoff

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Public Relations and Election Campaigns Specialized PR professionals also play a major role during federal, state, and local election campaigns: Fund-raising for candidates Speech writing for candidates Event planning Media relations/publicity for candidates Direct mail and telemarketing Web and social media A staggering $4 billion dollars was spent on the 2004 congressional and presidential races David Axelrod Howard Dean

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Public affairs in Government Public relations positions in government settings are usually referred to as public information or public affairs The chief purpose of public information professionals is to inform the public Over 10,000 federal employees are involved in public information/public affairs work Many positions also at the state and local level Major PR agencies, such as Edelman, Ketchum, and FD, provide services to government agencies What is the role of PR in government?

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FEMA Example: criticisms of the role of public relations in government

Summary: PRAD 255 - Module 10 - PR in Politics and Government - part 1 (Matt Ragas)

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