Lee Drutman

Senior Fellow, Political Reform Program

Lee Drutman is a senior fellow in the Political Reform program at New America. He is the author of The Business of America is Lobbying (Oxford University Press, 2015) and winner of the 2016 American Political Science Association's Robert A. Dahl Award, given for "scholarship of the highest quality on the subject of democracy." In addition, he writes regularly for Polyarchy, a Vox blog. An expert on lobbying, influence, and money in politics, he has also been quoted and/or cited in The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Economist, Slate, Mother Jones, The Atlantic, Business Insider, National Review, Politico, and many other publications, and on Morning Edition, All Things Considered, Planet Money, This American Life, Marketplace, Washington Journal, and The Colbert Report, among other programs.

Drutman also teaches in the Center for Advanced Governmental Studies at The Johns Hopkins University. Prior to coming to New America, Drutman was a senior fellow at the Sunlight Foundation and has worked in the U.S. Senate and at the Brookings Institution. He holds a Ph.D. in political science from the University of California, Berkeley and a B.A. from Brown University.

All Work

Measure seeks to reveal names, funding behind indirect lobbying

But distinguishing between different kinds of advocates is very difficult, said Lee Drutman, a senior fellow on political reform at the New

Want to be president? Show us how you’d handle a disaster.

Instead of spending the week after a debate arguing over who had the best comeback or the worst gaffe, maybe we’d get the kind of Monday-mor

Corporate Lobbying Is the Ultimate Tragedy of the Commons

As the tragedy of the commons teaches, the cattle can graze on the shared land for only so long. The policy process in Washington looks more

The debate over state polarization and campaign finance laws continues

Finally, and perhaps most importantly, polarization is a function of many, many things, and it’s hard to imagine how changing limits on what

Can unlimited Contributions to Political parties Really Reduce Polarization?

A core problem in American politics is ideological polarization, which makes compromise impossible, not only in Congress but also in the sta

Can Unlimited Contributions to Parties Really Reduce Polarization?

Ideological polarization has prevented American politics from functioning properly, but is strengthening political parties a solution?

The Washington Wishing-Well

In a new book, “The Business of America is Lobbying”, Lee Drutman of the New America Foundation, a think-tank, demonstrates that in recent y

What Big Pharma Wants From the Big Trade Deal

But the pharmaceutical industry has been lobbying lawmakers on the TPP since the beginning, and shaping far more than this one section of th

The Lobbying Bonanza

In 2014, Lee Drutman, a senior fellow at New America, conducted a study for the Sunlight Foundation that revealed that there were 799 regist

Low-Information lawmakers

At the risk of oversimplification (inevitable within the confines of a book review), we have two basic choices for how we orient our politic

Polluted Political Games

The real bargain is lobbying — and that’s why corporations spend 13 times as much lobbying as they do contributing to campaigns, by the calc

There are 14,000 lobbying groups in Washington

To see just how ubiquitous lobbying has become in Washington, I make an appointment for lunch with Lee Drutman. He's a senior fellow at the