Often the whipping boys of politicians and pundits, lobbyists are the recipients of lampooning stump portrayals and sensationalized news coverage. Little attention is given to how most lobbyists simply do their job or become effective at what they do. Whether it's helping staff draft legislative language, providing members with quality policy and political information, or just being a good listener, lobbyists must build and maintain relationships. If they do, they'll succeed in advancing their policy objectives within the give-and-take process of the American legislative system. The Art of Lobbying examines strategies and techniques from the perspective of those who are lobbied—the people who know what resonates and what falls upon deaf ears in congressional offices. A former longtime lobbyist himself, Levine has interviewed more than 40 current or former members of Congress, along with their staffers, to give a thorough review of the relevant academic literature and offer a behind-the-scenes perspective on what constitutes the art of lobbying.
Chapter 6: The Lobbyist's Ask
The Lobbyist's Ask
For lobbyists, the “ask” is the prime mover. It frames the legislative mission and sets all that must follow in motion. Its importance cannot be overstated. Some asks are simple; they request a lawmaker to perform an act that she can do unilaterally with little or no special preparation (for example, casting a yea ...