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The Six Protected Classes, Congress, and Interest Groups: A Study Open Access

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The purpose of this thesis is to examine why an effort by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) to update Medicare Part D prescription drug formularies failed so spectacularly. Additionally, it will examine the strong Congressional response and the role interest groups played in the defeat of this proposal. The unexpectedness of the rule is what garnered the response from Congress while the atomistic nature of modern interest groups allowed for coalition building and targeted lobbying efforts that further perpetuated the Congressional response. In conclusion, if any regulatory agency wants to undertake a controversial rulemaking they need to solicit appropriate feedback from relevant parties before doing so to prevent Congressional outrage. Even though interest groups have a more fractured message on most issues today due to their general atomization, they proved that they could still successfully coalesce around important policies to achieve a desired outcome.

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