Lobbying – Differences Between Legitimate Representation of Interests and Criminal Activity
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The paper is drawing differences between legitimate lobbying and criminal activities that often are misattributed as lobbying. The author presents a number of definitions of the concept, devised by academics of political sciences, law or economics in Poland and abroad.The author compares the institutions of the pluralist lobbying and the corporatist lobbying, briefly laying out the history of institutional development of lobbying in the United States and in the European Union. Particular attention has been paid to the importance of lobbying as a warrant of transparency in the legislation process. Rights and obligations of all the parties involved in the lobbying activity have been presented and examined.Separate chapter has been dedicated to describe legal status of lobbying in Poland. The author examines the existing regulations contained in the Constitution of the Republic of Poland and the Lobbying in Legislative Process Act, called the anti-lobbying bill.Expounding further on the status of the institution of the professional interest representation in Poland the author presents results of polling research on the subject.In the Conclusions the author is emphasising that lobbying in Poland is a legal professional activity. The author draws a clear distinction between criminal activities and the legitimate lobbying practice and points out that all instances of so-called “wild” lobbying i.e.: bribery, paid backing, embezzlement of public funds or property are are offences of corruption, included and defined in the Polish Criminal Code that must be firmly distinguished from the legitimate lobbying.
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