Review by Choice Review
This title refers to the concentration of political power among corporations and their lobbyists, despite being outnumbered by voting citizens, as businesses try to change the landscape of citizen's rights across the 50 states. Corporate interests accelerated their use of lobbyists after the 2010 Supreme Court decision in Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission, with major impacts in Wisconsin and public employee unions nationwide. Lafer (Univ. of Oregon) focuses interdisciplinary attention on the strategies and tactics of a handful of registered nationwide lobbyists (American Legislative Exchange Council, Americans for Prosperity, the US Chamber of Commerce, and the National Federation of Independent Business), which submitted "model legislation" to state legislators. He critiques the policies these groups espoused regarding minimum wages, union memberships, employee rights, government funding, and public education. The author presents evidence of economic impact from these state laws, which contrast greatly from the original proclamations of how these changes should improve a state's economy. Lafer examines tactics lobbyists used to weaken state funding for auditing and enforcing payroll regulations and promoting charter schools and voucher programs, irrespective of the actual results from those reforms. The voluminous resources listed in the notes are accurate and very accessible. Summing Up: Recommended. General readers; upper-division undergraduates through faculty. --Gary M. Klein, Willamette University
Copyright American Library Association, used with permission.