Case #940.1

The Regulation of Mud Flaps (Epilogue)

Publication Date: January 01, 1994
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When Congress calls for new regulations governing the size and effectiveness of truck mud flaps, small companies which had dominated the mud flap market suddenly find themselves in trouble. Failure to adapt their products to the new regulations could spell financial disaster. But small rubber company executives are suspicious that the new congressional mandate was no more than a special interest bill written by one Senator to favor a large corporation in his state which had just begun production of a new kind of mud flap. When the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration--which would have to draw up the new mud flap law's regulations--expresses misgivings about the new standard, a group of small manufacturers faces a strategic decision. How can they use the political process to protect themselves without appearing to be anti-safety?

Learning Objective:
This case can be used to stimulate discussion of lobbyists' role in shaping America's legislative process. In particular, this case illustrates the steps taken by a group of small companies to defend their interests against a bigger corporation. It also highlights the necessary tactics needed to further self-interest while maintaining the positive image of a company that cares for the greater public.

Other Details

Teaching Plan:
Available with Educator Access
Case Author:
David Eddy Spicer
Faculty Lead:
David King
Pages (incl. exhibits):
United States