Difference between Political Parties and Interest Groups

The difference between political parties and interest groups arises from the purposes of each. Political parties stand for election and try to win the votes cast by the people and represent them in councils, parliament or any other governing body of the state or country.

On the other hand, interest groups do not stand for election. Nor do they aspire to the votes of the public. This is the main difference between political parties and interest groups.

There are some other interesting facts as well about each of these groups that we will discuss in this article before we get to the differences between political parties and interest groups.

What is a Political Party?

A political party is a group of people who have come together to achieve common goals by acquiring and using political power. As you can see, the way political parties achieve their common goals is by gaining political power and using it.

The political parties that have finally won the elections govern the country amid challenges from opposition parties and interest groups that may not agree with their positions on various issues. Therefore, it is understood that political parties can also be questioned by interest groups.

The organization of political parties is usually very united since, without a good organization, a political party cannot function.

A political party usually has a proper constitution that explains why they have joined, the functions of their party, the roles of members, etc. They are very organized.

When it comes to the common good, political parties tend to work much more in unison than interest groups that seem to work for specific interests, as their name suggests.

What is an Interest Group?

Interest group is a group of people who try to influence policy makers to achieve their common goals. Interest groups typically work in the public interest.

They work to support a decision made by the ruling party or to oppose it very strongly. Sometimes, they have nothing to do with any party, but are instead focused on achieving a goal, an issue, that they believe is worth fighting for.

Interest groups force the government or the elected political party to implement a favorable decision for the welfare of society or a particular sector of society.

Another important difference between political parties and interest groups is that interest groups do not position their representatives in government.

That is because they are not interested in running a country. They are only interested in achieving their goals. They take on the challenges themselves without having representatives.

However, they will support candidates from political parties if those candidates share the same opinion they have on a given issue.

The nature of the organization of interest groups differs from that of political parties. In other words, the organization of interest groups is somewhat lax.

They are a group of people working for a common goal. That doesn’t necessarily mean that they have to have a constitution and so forth for their work.

What is the Difference between Political Parties and interest Groups

  1. Definition

Interest group is a group of people who try to influence policy makers to achieve their common goals. They do not seek to achieve political power in a country.

Political party is a group of people who have come together to conquer the power of government of a state or country in order to achieve their common goals.

  1. Representatives in the Government

Interest groups do not position their representatives in government.

On the other hand, political parties directly position their representatives in government. This is a big difference between political parties and interest groups.

  1. Organization

The nature of the organization of interest groups differs from that of political parties.

The organization of interest groups is somewhat lax compared to that of political parties.

The organization of political parties is usually very united.

  1. Internal Policy

The internal politics of the interest groups is not so flexible since they cannot change their position without changing who they are.

The internal politics of political parties is much more flexible.

  1. Political party and Interest Group

An interest group may arise within a political party as members of the political party may have different opinions on different issues.

An interest group cannot have more sub-factions within it. If an interest group has sub-factions, it is no longer an interest group.

These are the differences between the two terms, namely political parties and interest groups.