When it comes to the political process, an even playing field is crucial. But, right out of the gate, NALP is at a distinct disadvantage. That is because trade associations must follow burdensome and outdated federal election regulations, that make it more challenging for our members to support NALP PAC, our political action committee. Before we can contact members with information about the PAC or seek a donation, we must obtain “prior approval” from a corporate representative of the business. The prior approval rule is simply not fair and places the NALP and other trade associations at a distinct fundraising disadvantage.
Simply put, requiring trade associations to obtain prior approval is discriminatory. No other class of political action committee or political entity, including corporate, labor union, and individual membership association PAC, is subject to the prior approval requirement. Furthermore, considering the Citizen United ruling in which the Supreme Court found that political contributions are a protected form of free speech, all NALP members have a constitutional right to join in support of or in opposition to candidates for political office.
NALP PAC must already adhere to stringent requirements and already reports all contributions collected and distributed monthly. The added step of prior approval is unnecessary, time — consuming, and a confusing and convoluted process for our members.
Fortunately, NALP and other trade associations are working with Congress to address the issue. The Prior Approval Reform Act, H.R. 2101, will end the prior approval requirement, leveling the playing field with labor unions and strengthening our voice on Capitol Hill. To help ensure our members voices are heard on this crucial issue, we have set up an action alert message so that you can join the chorus of voices in opposition to this unnecessary regulation. Please join us and visit the NALP Online Advocacy Center and urge your member of Congress to level the political playing field by supporting the Prior Approval Reform Act!