Urban Interests and Campaign Contributions:
Evidence from Los Angeles
Political activity is a key determinant of group influence in urban politics. This article examines a form of political activity often ignored by urban scholars, namely, campaign contributions. Using data from the 2001 Los Angeles municipal elections, I explore contributions from various urban interests. Because of its ability to overcome collective action problems, I expect business to be the main contributors, and among corporate interests, I expect development concerns to predominate. Although business contributes the vast majority of funds, contrary to expectations, land use interests are not the most active contributors, a spot reserved for professional concerns. As a whole, non‐corporate interests, often allied against the business community, are as active or more active than many corporate contributors. And, in general, patterns of contributions reflect individual, rather than organizational, activity.
Document Type: Research Article
Affiliations: University of New Mexico
Publication date: June 1, 2005