"Multivariate analysis indicates that economic elites and organised groups representing business interests have substantial independent impacts on US government policy, while average citizens and mass-based interest groups have little or no independent influence."
So concluded a recent study by Princeton University Prof Martin Gilens and Northwestern University Prof Benjamin I Page.
The study basic bottom line was that the wealthy few move policy, while the average American has little power and that the US is dominated by a rich and powerful elite- an oligarchy .
The study concluded that :"Americans do enjoy many features central to democratic governance, such as regular elections, freedom of speech and association and a widespread (if still contested) franchise. But we believe that if policymaking is dominated by powerful business organisations and a small number of affluent Americans, then America's claims to being a democratic society are seriously threatened. "