BY AGC PAC CO-CHAIRS DIRK ELSPERMAN AND EDDIE STEWART
In a year like 2020, it was fitting that the presidential election and a number of down-ballot races went into political overtime. According to preliminary estimates, 160 million Americans participated in the 2020 general election shattering the previous record of 138 million in 2016.
Once again, AGC PAC, AGC of America’s Political Action Committee, helped elect a substantial number of pro-construction candidates to the U.S. House of Representatives and U.S. Senate. Our combined resources made a real difference in the association’s ability to impact election outcomes, and our efforts proved successful once the various races were certified. On Election Day, 189 AGC PAC-backed House candidates and 27 Senate candidates were on the ballot. Collectively, 202 candidates won their respective elections to the 117th Congress, resulting in a 94 percent success score. This is truly a remarkable outcome for the association given the rancorous debate that filled this past election season.
For those of you who may be unfamiliar with AGC PAC, its role is to help elect candidates to Congress who, regardless of party affiliation, understand the industry and the specific needs, interests and concerns of AGC member companies and their employees. Since federal law prohibits AGC from directly contributing to such candidates, it is imperative to use the legal tools available to the association and proactively participate in the election of qualified individuals who understand the industry and will consider AGC-proposed solutions. Given the legal avenues available to contribute under federal law, AGC PAC is the most efficient means of pooling together the resources of eligible member firm employees to accomplish this task.
In celebrating our electoral successes, we would be remiss if we did not thank the Construction Advocacy Fund for its sponsorship of AGC’s 2020 Elec-tion Center, which helped turn out the construction vote by helping industry professionals register to vote, obtain information about early or absentee ballot voting and confirm polling locations. This online center saw incredible web traffic over the final weeks of the election as it received nearly 500,000 total visits from interested construction voters.
As legislative debates begin to take shape in the new Congress, AGC will be front and center continuing to fight for a “safe harbor” set of protocols to provide member firms with protection from tort or employment liability for failing to prevent a COVID-19 infection; increased funding for career and tech-nical education; a significant, long-term infrastructure bill that increases federal investment in all forms of public infrastructure and facilities; and reforms to the multiemployer pension plan system.
There will no doubt be more policy issues that will arise as the year progresses. Know that AGC’s experienced team of government relations profession-als will continue to represent you and the industry at the highest levels of government. Rest assured, no association is more visible in its promotion of construction and member-firm interests across all sectors of the federal government than AGC. It is one of the reasons why AGC is regarded as the “the construction association.”
Please visit advocacy.agc.org to learn more about the association’s advocacy activities.