Home » » Beyond descriptive representation: American Indian opposition to federal legislation
This study explores how American Indians use interest group strategies to block federal legislation. Unlike other disadvantaged groups, who have influenced public policymaking through descriptive representation, American Indians have turned to interest group strategies to protect their interests in Congress. Using original data collected from American Indian testimony at congressional hearings on 266 bills during five Congresses, this study tests interest group hypotheses about how and when active opposition affects bill enactment. It finds that American Indians can block federal legislation harmful to their interests when they unify against a bill and that members of Congress frequently respond to American Indian opposition by amending bills to alleviate American Indian concerns.