In late April, the American Rental Association (ARA) held its annual Legislative Caucus here in Washington, D.C. The week was packed full of all kinds of events for caucus attendees, including the ARAPAC reception.
ARAPAC is the acronym for the American Rental Association Political Action Committee. ARAPAC is organized as a federal PAC, which means that we only contribute funds to the campaigns of candidates for federal offices like members of the U.S. House of Representatives or the U.S. Senate. Any ARA member can belong to ARAPAC and membership does not require you to make any contributions to ARAPAC.
ARAPAC has three major fundraising events every year. One at The Rental Show, one at the caucus and one at ARA’s fall State, Local and Provincial Leaders Conference. This year’s fundraiser at caucus was the most successful fundraising effort we have ever had at caucus, raising more than$14,000. I think part of the reason for this success is the frustration that many ARA members are feeling about the current political situation in Washington, D.C. One of the things they want to do is to use ARAPAC to send a message to those who have supported our industry that we still support them by contributing to their campaigns. They also want to send a message to those who do not support the equipment rental industry that ARA will not support them and in some cases will support those trying to replace them.
That is why ARA of Massachusetts members and ARAPAC supported Sen. Scott Brown in his successful election campaign to become the junior senator from Massachusetts succeeding the late Edward Kennedy. That is why ARAPAC is supporting Cory Gardner (R-Colo.) in his race to unseat U.S. Rep. Betsy Markey (D-Colo.) in Colorado’s fourth Congressional District and why we are continuing to support Sen. Blanche Lincoln (D-Ark.), who is the champion of estate tax reform in the U.S. Senate. These and so many other races are important to the future of our country and the equipment rental industry, and ARAPAC is one way ARA members can make their voices heard by those running for seats in the U.S. Congress in 2010.
ARAPAC is an important part of ARA’s government affairs program. To join ARAPAC, go to www.ararental.org, click on “Government Affairs, choose “ARAPAC” from the drop-down menu and click on “Join” from the list on the right side of the menu. You can download and print the membership form and send it to ARA. By joining, you can make your voice heard. You also can use the menu to see which candidates ARAPAC has contributed to in the current election cycle.