Direct Marketing and Politics: A Partnership for the Ages

by Bill McClellan on Jun 15, 2017 2:01:53 PM Advocacy, Government Relations


Sen. Luther Strange (R-AL) joined us as our legislative keynote speaker on day two of the 2017 Government Affairs Fly-In and his remarks on the current political landscape were inspiring. Strange’s regulatory experience as Alabama’s Attorney General has given him plenty of background knowledge of the direct response industry to take straight into the U.S. Senate.

He believes that now is the time for fundamental change and that we have a chance to make a difference in the current regulatory environment. Strange says that Congress is working behind the scenes to address the problem of proliferation of bad marketing practices, class actions, and how they affect small businesses.

CEOs of major companies, Blackstone CEO Stephen Schwarzman, General Motors CEO Mary Barra, J.P. Morgan CEO Jamie Dimon, WalMart CEO Doug McMillon, and IBM CEO Ginni Rometty among others, are stepping up to advise President Trump on matters such as regulations affecting businesses and lowering the corporate tax rate. Strange encouraged participants to follow their lead and actively engage in the stakeholder process. 

So how do marketing companies feel about Washington, D.C.? Strange says that those companies are paying closer attention to D.C. politics and called the time we live in, “the new industrial revolution.” He said Congress needs to be addressing cyber technology and encouraged marketing companies and companies throughout the nation to become more involved in politics.

The most notable major cyber bill was passed in 2015 and signed into law by President Obama to address cybersecurity, otherwise known as the Cybersecurity Act of 2015. Proponents of the bill were focused on protecting consumers and combatting hackers in order to alleviate the fallout from data breaches that have exposed hundreds of millions of Americans' personal information in the last few years.

While Congress continues to work to address this and related issues, Strange said he will continue to build bridges with marketing companies and encouraged businesses to speak up on regulatory issues by going to Capitol Hill and meeting with representatives that advocate for businesses.

Thank you to all who attended the Government Affairs Fly-In and to those who went with us to represent the direct response industry on the Hill! 

 About the Author


Bill McClellan serves as ERA's Vice President of Government Affairs. Prior to joining the association, Bill worked as a lobbyist at the Georgia Automobile Dealers Association, covering the state legislature and Georgia's congressional delegation. Before working for the GADA, Bill managed political campaigns at both the congressional and state constitutional levels.

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