What happens in Congress affects all of our lives and extends into every corner of the economy. Because so much is at stake there, businesses and other interest groups spend billions of dollars each year trying to influence it.
Yet, most of these efforts are doomed to futility from the outset. Only a small percentage of the bills introduced in Congress actually become law, and most interested parties do not fully understand why those few bills succeed. More importantly, how to get Congress to do what they want remains a mystery to them. It is as if everyone in the place is speaking in the ancient Greek of the first democracy.
This book will help you understand Congress. Written from the perspective of one who has helped put a lot of bills on the President's desk and helped stop a lot more, this book explains in everyday terms why Congress behaves as it does. Then it shows you how you can best deploy whatever resources you have to move Congress in your direction.
You need no longer wonder what goes on in Congress. The book will allow you to read the news every day and understand what drives congressional actions. More importantly, you will no longer waste your time and money on lobbying and advocacy strategies that do not help your cause or, worse yet, actually hurt it. You will also learn when congressional actions can and cannot happen allowing you to spend your resources elsewhere if necessary.
Because you have limited time, this book sticks to the basics and its chapters are short so that it can be digested rapidly in smaller chunks. Its advice applies to anyone who wants to affect the outcomes in Congress.
"By providing a practical guide to lobbying, Persuading Congress demystifies the ways in which citizens can influence legislation and achieve their public policy objectives. Anyone who wants to make a difference through legislation -- not just executives -- needs to read this book, master its lessons, and keep it handy."
- F. Christopher Arterton, Dean, Graduate School of Political Management, The George Washington University
"This revealing book pulls back the curtain on the Congressional decision-making process and, best of all, provides invaluable advice to corporate executives on effectively influencing not just national and local legislation but the corporate environment as well."
-- Robert Clements, Chairman & CEO, EverBank Financial Corp.
"The Constitution gives Americans the right to petition their government for a redress of grievances. And no legislature is more accessible to its own people than the United States Congress. But rights and access alone do not translate into effective engagement or useful political action. In Persuading Congress, Joseph Gibson, a longtime veteran of Capitol Hill, offers masterful counsel to anyone who wants to work well with Congress. In Washington, there are well over 10,000 registered lobbyists. Very few grasp and convey the keys to successful advocacy as well as Gibson does."
- Martin Gold, Covington & Burling, Washington, DC
Summary of Contents
Part I: How Congress Works
A. The Internal Dynamics of Congress
B. External Influences on Congress
Part II: How You Can Influence Congress
A. Facts of Life
B. Personal Tools
C. Intellectual Tools
D. Environmental Tools
E. Practical Tools
G. Long-Term Considerations
Complete Table of Contents online at www.PersuadingCongress.com