The LSCU & Affiliates have a big year ahead. Alabama and Florida have mid-term elections and each state also has state elections including gubernatorial. The LSCU board adopted an endorsement policy, so the league will be more prominent in endorsing candidates. The first endorsement was for Democrat Alex Sink in Florida's 13th Congressional District. She is running for the seat formerly held by the late Bill Young. The league has been sending information regarding her election to credit unions, held an in-district check presentation, and is working with the campaign to get information out about campaign walks.
The league is also interested in the special election in Florida's 19th Congressional District. The league's GA staff is still meeting and assessing the candidates for the seat formerly held by Trey Radel. In Alabama's 6th Congressional District, there are still many candidates vying for Spencer Bachus' seat when he retires at the end of the year. The League is working to meet all of the candidates before deciding if it will back one of them.
The November Congressional elections will most likely be smooth in Alabama with all incumbents expected to win. In Florida, 2nd District incumbent Steve Southerland has a prominent challenger in Gwen Graham. The League will be following this race closely as Southerland has been accessible to credit unions during his term.
On the state level, Alabama and Florida's governors are up for re-election. Alabama Gov. Robert Bentley is expected to be re-elected. In Florida, Gov. Rick Scott is being challenged by former governor Charlie Crist. It's expected to be one of the most prominent gubernatorial races in the country. The league plans to be a title sponsor of the gubernatorial debate in the fall hosted by Leadership Florida.
The Mountain West Credit Union Association (MWCUA), which serves Arizona, Colorado and Wyoming, employs a robust credit union get out the vote (CUGOTV) plan that fully engages our member credit unions at the grassroots level. This program is already underway and helps support candidates that the MWCUA endorses. The program is active through Election Day.
Our CUGOTV14 grassroots plan is very interactive, including social media aspects, and other electronic communications that helps friends of credit unions get elected or re-elected in crucial public policy positions.
Locally (across the three-state Association), the MWCUA is monitoring a few races. We are closely watching two U.S. Senate races, one in Colorado as credit union champion Mark Udall (D) is up for re-election, and in Wyoming where Senator Mike Enzi (R) is also up for re-election.
In Arizona, there are three House races that we are watching closely. Rep. Ann Kirkpatrick (CD1 AZ -D), Rep. Ron Barber (CD2 AZ -D) and Rep. Kyrsten Sinema (CD9 AZ D) are all running for re-election. In Colorado, the House races include CD6 Race where incumbent and credit union supporter Mike Coffman (CD6 CO R) is being challenged by another credit union supporter in former Colorado Speaker of the House, Andrew Romanoff (D). We are also monitoring the U.S. House race of credit union champion, Congressman Ed Perlmutter (CD7 CO D).
In Arkansas, we are most interested in the race for U.S. Senate between Sen. Mark Pryor and Rep. Tom Cotton; Pryor is the only Democrat Arkansas has in Washington right now, so Republicans would occupy all seats if Pryor lost. Cotton is a first-time congressman and still somewhat new to the credit union industry. We have not taken a position on this race.
We're also monitoring the 4th and 2nd congressional district races, where the incumbent has decided not to seek reelection. In District 2, we are supporting Rep. Ann Clemmer, a Republican. Her significant opponent, French Hill, is a bank executive and unlikely to support credit union priorities. In District 4, James Lee Witt, a Democrat, is pro-credit union and supports the federal credit union tax exemption and member business lending. At the state level, we are closely watching the governor's race.
With nine legislative vacancies in 2013, California has already seen quite a bit of reshuffling recently. Not to mention we are still adjusting to a new top two primary system, redistricting and new 12-year term limits. Combine this with the four representatives of the California delegation who recently announced their retirements, 20 open Assembly seats and the eight open State Senate seats - the 2014 election year is sure to be an interesting one. We will be keeping a close eye on the vacancies left by Rep. Henry Waxman (D-Beverly Hills), Rep. George Miller (D-Richmond), Rep. Buck McKeon (R-Santa Clarita) and John Campbell (R-Irvine).
The league is actively engaged in the political process and interviews nearly all candidates running for office. Not only is this face-to-face time an ideal opportunity to educate candidates about credit unions, but it is also an opportunity to get an idea of their priorities and views. When making our decisions, we take into consideration a candidate's knowledge of credit unions, relationships with their local credit union CEOs as well as the viability of their campaign. Now more than ever, we have seen an increase in the number of candidates who come to our office that have had experiences with credit unions in their personal life and understand the credit union difference.
In Connecticut, we generally watch closely our 4th and 5th Congressional districts during the election season because they have traditionally been competitive. The candidate filing date for all CT Congressional races is not until June 10th, so at this point we do not know which ones might be a challenge for incumbents. All of our current members of Congress support credit unions and our tax status among many of our other issues. We tell our members that it is in all of our best interests to be friendly and build relationships with our members of Congress and other legislators throughout the state. We have never discouraged any political involvement by our members with any candidate; instead we educate them on where the candidates stand on issues that are important to credit unions.
We are still in the process of examining some state positions in the election cycle. Our focus this year is and will be some legislation currently in committee stateside and of course risk-based capital and taxation on a national basis.
When Sen. Saxby Chambliss announced he would not run for re-election, he turned Georgia's election season on end. This left our state with four open congressional seats and a plethora of candidates vying for those seats. Senator Chambliss' announcement also opened up potential new opportunities for many state level legislators.
Georgia credit unions are analyzing each of the races carefully, but have found one unique opportunity in the open 10th district race, as Mike Collins, a board member of Associated Credit Union, is running for that seat. As with all elections, credit union people will be active in many races, but especially in the 10th district through monetary support, credit union tours, in-person activities and partisan communications. More than 250 credit union loyalists were active in campaign related activities in the 2012 elections, and we hope to exceed that number with multiple races in 2014.
Before his passing in late 2012, U.S. Senator Daniel Inouye recommended Hawaii Governor Neil Abercrombie appoint Congresswoman Colleen Hanabusa to succeed him in the Senate. However, the governor instead appointed then Lieutenant Governor Brian Schatz to fill the vacancy caused by Senator Inouye's death until the next election in 2014.
Representative Hanabusa has decided to challenge Senator Schatz for that Senate seat, the term of which expires in 2016. Representative Hanabusa and Senator Schatz have both been supportive of credit union issues, so the Hawaii Credit Union League will remain neutral in the primary election and support the winner of that race in the 2014 general election.
Meanwhile, a number of candidates are running for the Congressional District 1 seat currently held by Representative Hanabusa. Some of those candidates have also been supportive of credit union issues in the Hawaii state legislature or the Honolulu city council, so the Hawaii Credit Union League will also remain neutral in the primary election and support a winner of that race in the 2014 general election.
In Illinois, we are preparing for the March 18, 2014 primary election as well as keeping an eye towards the general election on November 4, 2014. While none of federal elections involve primaries that require credit union campaign involvement, we will be actively participating in several state-level campaigns. Towards that end, the Illinois Credit Union League (ICUL) and the Credit Union Political Action Council (CUPAC) have been utilizing our chapter structure, grassroots coordinators at each credit union, and our legislative forum representatives to conduct candidate interviews, volunteer in campaigns, and attend candidate fundraising events. Additionally, CUPAC has enjoyed a successful fundraising year and is well-positioned to defend any credit union allies from potential banker attacks.
We expect Indiana's mid-term election season to be relatively uneventful. Neither Senate seat is up this year and there are no serious primary challenges in the House races. All of the House incumbents are running for re-election and only one seat is considered to be possibly in play in the general election and even that race favors the incumbent. Given these election dynamics, Indiana's credit unions will continue to build on strong relationships with our Congressional delegation through district and DC meetings while participating in campaign activities whenever possible.
In Iowa, half of the seats in our congressional delegation will be open — which is unprecedented. Tom Harkins is retiring, leaving his U.S. Senate seat open and that has attracted quite a bit of attention. Congressman Bruce Braley, a strong credit union supporter, is running on the Democratic side and there are at least four candidates running on the Republican side. It should prove to be a very competitive race. In the House, Congressman Braley is vacating the First Congressional District to run for the Senate, and the incumbent in the Third District is retiring after this term. The Iowa Credit Union League is talking to candidates in both of the races on both sides of the aisle. We will be having forums and other opportunities for our members to hear directly from candidates. We will be heavily engaged in all of these important races.
The 2014 election cycles promises to be a busy one for Kansas credit unions with state-wide officeholders and 125 State Representatives up for election in addition to the Congressional races. KCUA and Kansas credit unions will be engaging in the election cycle on both the state and federal level to provide support to credit union friendly candidates for office — both with contributions from our political action committees and with providing grassroots support. We will know more specifics as the filing deadlines approach.
For the 2014 elections, the Maine Credit Union League has identified important races at both the state and federal level. Our primary focus at the state level will be in supporting the gubernatorial campaign of Congressman Mike Michaud. Congressman Michaud is a long-time, former credit union board member and is now an honorary credit union board member. He has a long history of supporting Maine credit unions during his nearly 20 years in the Maine Legislature and more than a decade in Congress, and, as governor, he would be a strong friend and advocate for credit unions and our issues. We made our endorsement of Congress Michaud for Governor last October, and have been working to support his campaign including coordinating credit union visits, lining up volunteers to work on his campaign and other outreach efforts, and hosting a fundraiser for his campaign later this year. We will also be focused on supporting the re-election of Senator Susan Collins, a strong credit union friend, to the United State Senate, including enlisting volunteers for her campaign, hosting a fundraiser, and coordinating other speaking opportunities and visits throughout the campaign. We will be supporting another strong credit union friend, as well, in Congresswoman Chellie Pingree's re-election in Maine's First Congressional District. With Mike Michaud's run for Governor, there are a number of good friends running as candidates in the Democratic and Republican primaries for his Second Congressional District seat. We will assess the outcome of those primaries and meet with the winners this summer.
There are two important elections in Michigan this year: the open U.S. Senate seat vacated by the retiring Sen. Carl Levin, a Democrat, and the gubernatorial race.
In the Senate, the Michigan CU League made an early endorsement for U.S. Rep. Gary Peters (D-Bloomfield Hills), who is likely to face former Michigan Secretary of State Terri Lynn Land, who currently is a member of the national Republican Committee. The endorsement was made during the league's annual convention, at which Peters spoke.
More recently, MCUL was the first major organization to endorse Gov. Rick Snyder in his reelection bid, announcing our endorsement the same day he officially announced his reelection bid. Snyder, a Republican, will likely face former U.S. Rep. Mark Schauer.
For the 2014 election cycle, the Minnesota Credit Union Network will be closely monitoring a number of key races, including:
Incumbent Al Franken (D-MN) is looking to win his first re-election campaign after narrowly beating Republican Norm Coleman in 2008 in a race that took several months of recounts to settle. In his first term in office, Senator Franken has proven to be a strong ally of credit unions, signing on as a cosponsor of CUNA's MBL bill in 2012.
Representative Michele Bachmann (R), a four-term incumbent representing Minnesota's Sixth Congressional District, announced that she would not run for reelection in 2014, creating an opening in a Republican-leaning district. MnCUN will meet with Sixth District candidates to gauge their level of support for credit unions during the campaign cycle.
Congressman Rick Nolan (D) was elected to Minnesota's Eighth Congressional District in 2012, ousting Republican Chip Cravaack, who served just one term. Nolan served in Congress from 1975-81 and left office to return to the private sector. After Cravaack defeated longtime Democratic Rep. Jim Oberstar in 2010, Nolan decided to run again to reclaim his House seat. In the short time since he's been back in Congress, Nolan has supported nearly all of CUNA's legislative agenda, proving to be a strong ally of credit unions both in Minnesota and across the country.
The Missouri Credit Union Association (MCUA) closely monitors each election involving state and federal candidates. Filing does not begin until Feb. 25 and ends on March 25 in Missouri, so we will have a better picture at that time who will be running for re-election and who will be facing strong challenges. Neither of our U.S. Senators faces re-election in 2014, and the only statewide race in 2014 is State Auditor. However, due to term limits, we anticipate challenging situations with credit union friends facing each other in the 2014 elections. Credit union leaders in Missouri work hard to connect with candidates and identify credit union supporters (and those that are not as supportive). Working with the MCUA Governmental Affairs Committee members, MCUA expects to support a wide variety of credit union legislative friends and naming Credit Union Champions in Missouri in advance of the 2014 elections.
Nebraska credit unions are closely watching both state and federal races, including an open U.S. Senate seat, open Gubernatorial seat, 17 open State Legislative seats, and all three congressional races are contested. Each of these races will be important to the future of credit unions and the advancement of our legislative priorities at the state and federal level. Nebraska's credit unions will be involved in many of these races through political contributions, GOTV, and voter communications. Nebraska's credit unions understand that what happens in the Unicameral and on Capitol Hill directly and indirectly impacts how they can serve their members. Therefore, it is incumbent upon our industry to make our voice heard by those who write and pass laws.
Nevada will have open statewide seats in 2014, including Governor, Lieutenant Governor, Attorney General, Secretary of State, Controller and Treasurer. Governor Brian Sandoval will be the only statewide incumbent running for re-election, as the other incumbents are prevented from running for their current office due to term limits. In the State Legislature, both parties are aiming to capture key legislative seats that could help them to retain or pick up seats. The State Senate will be an intense battleground where Democrats hold 11 senate seats and Republicans hold 10 seats.
Dr. Joe Heck, a long-time credit union friend and ally, is being challenged in what has been his stronghold for two-terms now. Nevada's 3rd Congressional District, which includes Las Vegas and Henderson, should be very competitive. Dr. Heck's commitment to his constituents has created broad-based support from voters. In 2012, the district was 51 percent Democratic to 49 percent Republican in terms of voter registration. The district remains challenging for Dr. Heck as Erin Bilbray enters the race with a strong family name. Dr. Heck, in addition to being a Member of Congress, is an active duty Army Reservist.
Additionally in Nevada, there will be ballot initiatives revolving around tax increases and revenue generators for the state's coffers.
The Credit Union Association of New Mexico is closely watching the congressional representative race in southern New Mexico. Rep. Steve Pearce (R) has been credit union-friendly before, signing on to the CURIA bill in 2007 but doesn't stand with credit unions on member business lending and supplemental capital. His opponent, Rocky Lara (D) is mounting a credible campaign.
CUANM is monitoring the two candidates carefully and will try to meet with both to find out more about their stance on various issues affecting credit unions. The CUANM Governmental Affairs Committee will decide which candidate to back based on his or her stance on credit union issues.
There don't appear to be any other credible challengers in other New Mexico races yet.
The Credit Union Association of New York is closely following two races with open seats left by Reps. Carolyn McCarthy (D-4) and Bill Owens (D-21), who both recently announced they will not seek re-election. While we are monitoring these races closely, the field of candidates is still in flux. Once we know the candidates, we will vet them through our candidate endorsement process for consideration by our PAC trustees and Association board. If we have a strong, pro-credit union candidate, our level of support could range from activating our member credit unions to announcing a formal endorsement.
North Carolina/South Carolina
The Carolinas Credit Union League enjoys its political work, and this year will be no different in North and South Carolina. In the Tar Heel State, there are some competitive races worth watching. One primary has an incumbent credit union friend facing a real challenge, and a senate race will be among the most expensive and visible in the country. The Palmetto State anticipates few if any surprises of its own, yet those members are sure to be vocal. In the end, our "all politics is local" approach will have each state's advocacy team ready to resume work and meet any new members as the celebrations conclude.
On the federal level, CUAD has developed a strong working relationship with Freshman Congressman Kevin Cramer (R). Since being elected, Rep. Cramer has demonstrated strong support for a number of credit union legislative initiatives, including flood insurance, privacy notification, regulatory relief and GSA reform. As of Feb. 1, the North Dakota Democrats have not announced a candidate to challenge Cramer. A potential candidate could be State Senator George Sinner (D), who is the son of the last North Dakota Democratic Governor (George Sinner ). Sinner is a president of a community bank based in Fargo.
On the state level, half of the legislative districts will be on the ballot. Republicans hold super majorities in both chambers and are likely to maintain the advantage this election cycle.
The CUAD Governmental Affairs Committees will again implement state-wide credit union Legislative "awareness" town hall meetings throughout the state starting in September and concluding in October. These hugely successful events are credit union-specific educational and awareness events that bring our advocacy/grass roots efforts to the local/chapter level.
These events have achieved measurable results as they have successfully reached out to more than 240 state legislators and candidates and attracted several hundred credit union advocates to these chapter events over three election cycles. That equates to the credit unions connecting to more than 60 percent of our state lawmakers and prospective candidates in each of the last three election cycles. We successively reached out to 62 percent of our state lawmakers and candidates this last election cycle alone.
Ohio has a unique race it is keeping a close eye on. Kurt Neeper, Vice President of Business Development for Superior Federal Credit Union, is running for the 4th District seat in the Ohio House of Representatives. Kurt is the first credit union staff member to actively pursue a seat in the Ohio General Assembly, and we are supporting him politically and through grassroots efforts supported by the entire Ohio credit union movement."
2014 is shaping up to be a year of significant political transition for Oklahoma. In the House, at least ten seats will be contested. Speaker of the House T.W. Shannon is running for U.S. Senate and relinquished his seat.
Rep. James Lankford has announced he will also run for the U.S. Senate. That race has created a domino effect, since corporation commissioner Patrice Douglas, state senator Clark Jolley, and a field of lesser-known candidates have announced intentions to run for Lankford's seat.
Until the April filing deadline passes, the field remains open to more new candidates in the state legislature. While it's hard to tell right now who will be most supportive of credit unions, we do hope to meet with candidates for a discussion on the issues to learn where they stand.
The Northwest Credit Union Association is monitoring all state and federal legislative activity this year as always. We will actively participate in support of candidates who champion cooperative credit unions.
In 2014, Pennsylvanians will be immersed in a contested gubernatorial race. Current Republican Gov. Tom Corbett is seeking re-election and there is a wide field of Democratic challengers, but no clear front-runner. Pennsylvania has a long history of re-electing sitting Governors for a second term (State Constitution permits only two consecutive terms). However, the state has a large budget deficit and Governor Corbett has low poll numbers. Therefore, we anticipate a costly race and usual election activities to take place by Nov. 4.
In the state general assembly, 25 state senate seats and all 203 house seats are up for election. Currently, there are 17 open seats, primarily from retirements and re-districting. Both the state senate and house are Republican-controlled and the Democrats would need to win an unprecedented number of seats to gain control of either.
At the federal level, Pennsylvania's 18 Congressional seats are up for election, with two open Congressional seats. U.S. Rep. Allyson Schwartz (D-13) is running for governor and U.S. Rep. Jim Gerlach (R-6) is not seeking re-election. These are two major seats in the suburban Philadelphia area and will be watched closely nationwide.
The Pennsylvania Credit Union Association will be working with its member credit unions to coordinate meet and greets, candidate interviews, and other credit union outreach. The Association will be helping credit union friendly candidates at all levels.
With the pending retirement of Senate Banking Chair, Tim Johnson, South Dakota will have its first open senate race in 36 years (first since 1978). Johnson leaves after three terms in office. Former Governor, Mike Rounds is likely to beat out five other Republican challengers in the June primary.His prospective candidacy in November presents a formidable challenge to take the seat away from the Democrats. Since former Congresswoman Stephanie Herseth-Sandlin declined to enter the race, Rick Weiland, a former aide to Senate Minority Leader, Tom Daschle, is the lone candidate seeking the Democratic endorsement. Congresswoman Kristi Noem is likely to return for a third term and keep her seat in the U.S. House. South Dakota credit unions will continue to reach out to the congresswoman to strengthen our relationship with her office and staff. We will be sponsoring credit union participation in a number of the Congresswoman's meetings and events throughout the year, including an exclusive pheasant hunting event in the fall.
On the State-level, the South Dakota Bankers Association has been promoting a state-wide effort for most of the year that would implore local lawmakers to impose taxes (local, franchises, or federal) on not-for-profit credit unions. The core argument that the banks make in lobbying for imposition of this tax are that credit unions have grown "beyond their intended purposes in both size and scope" and that in doing so, they claim it will solve local, state, and federal budget shortfalls. Therefore, credit unions here are very engaged and active in education lawmakers on the financial cooperative difference.
Since the South Dakota legislature has term limits (two four-year consecutive terms in each chamber) we are anticipating a forty (40%) percent turnover in both chambers this election cycle. In an effort to reach out to both incumbents and candidates the CUAD Governmental Affairs Committees will again implement state-wide credit union Legislative "awareness" town hall meetings. These hugely successful events are credit union specific educational and awareness events that bring our advocacy/grass roots efforts to the local/chapter level. More importantly, these events have achieved measurable results as they have successfully reached out to more than 240 state legislators and candidates and attracted several hundred credit union advocates to these chapter events over three election cycles.
In Tennessee the League has always taken the position to support the incumbent candidate if he or she has been supportive of credit union issues. To my knowledge, the last time a sitting House member was defeated in Tennessee was in 2008 and before that it was over 40 years since an incumbent lost a race.
We will be watching the 4th district race closely between Scott Desjarlais and State Senator Jim Tracy, and meeting with credit unions in the 4th district to gauge the interest and candidate support for this race.
The Texas primary elections are March 4, and the league is following a number of contested races. Two of the most watched races are for governor and lieutenant governor. For the first time in over a decade, the governor's race is open, and the top contenders are Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott (R) and state Sen. Wendy Davis (D), who are expected to secure their respective party's nominations. In the lieutenant governor's race, incumbent David Dewhurst faces several challengers in the Republican primary. If none of the candidates receives over 50% of the vote, the top two vote recipients will face each other in a runoff.
At the federal level, Sen. John Cornyn is running for re-election and has drawn several challengers for the GOP primary, including U.S. Rep. Steve Stockman (Houston). This leaves Stockman's seat open, and nearly a dozen candidates have filed to run in the Republican primary. Cornyn is expected to easily win the primary.
In the Texas Senate, 15 of the 31 senators are not up for re-election, while four incumbents are not seeking re-election and three incumbents have primary opponents. The league is closely following Sen. John Carona's re-election. Sen. Carona (Dallas) has been a strong supporter of Texas credit unions in the state legislature, and the league has encouraged credit unions to volunteer in his campaign.
In the Texas House, 13 of the 150 members are not seeking re-election; 25 incumbents have primary opponents, and 30 will face general election challengers. The league is monitoring all of these races closely.
For mid-term elections 2014, the Virginia Credit Union League is closely watching three races. There are two open Congressional seats with the upcoming retirements of Congressmen Frank Wolf and Jim Moran.
Wolf (R) served 14 terms in the 10th Congressional District while Moran (D) has been in office since 1991 as a representative from the 8th district.
Each district is located in the Northern Virginia suburbs. Moran's seat is widely viewed as being a safe seat for Democrats while Wolf's leans Republican. There has been a great deal of interest and no shortage of candidates from both sides of the aisle for each seat.
The league will await the results of the June primaries before engaging actively in these two races. We will meet with the party nominees to dialog about the impact credit unions have on the Virginia economy and the benefits our not-for-profit cooperatives deliver to our members and communities.
The league may choose to endorse candidates based upon their respective positions on the issues most important to us: preservation of our tax exemption, charter enhancement, GSE reform, regulatory relief, etc.
In the final race of interest, Sen. Mark Warner is also seeking reelection for a second term (in office since 2009). As a member of the Senate Committee on Banking, Sen. Warner is actively involved with credit union issues such as Dodd-Frank and GSE reform.
Warner is a moderate who supports tax reform to decrease national debt.
This is an interesting race as the likely opponent will be Ed Gillespie, former chairman of the Republican National Committee. The league backed Warner in the past. However, no formal decision will be made on an endorsement in this race until later in the election season.
Vermont's Legislature, statewide administration offices and U.S. House of Representatives seat are up for election in 2014. In the race for governor, incumbent Peter Shumlin is widely regarded among the most liberal in the country and was initially elected by a narrow margin over his Republican opponent. But since then, he has kept a high approval rating. With little serious opposition so far, Vermont's incumbent governor is likely locked in for another term. Vermont's lieutenant governor, a position which is separately elected, is the only Republican holding state-wide office, does not seek the governor's office, and also is likely for re-election.
Among other races the potential for seriously contested elections, if any, is likely limited to the state legislature. With Democrats holding a 2-1 margin in the House, and 3-1 in the Senate, a shift of party control is unlikely in either chamber. That doesn't mean, however, that 2014 doesn't have some competitive races in both the Vermont House and Vermont Senate in store.
At the Legislative level, the Association of Vermont Credit Unions doesn't typically advocate publicly for particular candidates. It does, however, conduct candidate surveys and, through its state level PAC, make campaign contributions when deemed appropriate.
In West Virginia, we are certainly keeping a close eye on two particular races. With Senator Rockefeller announcing his retirement, the U.S. Senate seat will be hotly contested between Rep. Shelley Moore Capito and WV Secretary of State Natalie Tennant. While we have not endorsed any candidate to date, we have worked directly with Congressman Capito over the years in her role on the Financial Services Committee. The second open seat garnering much attention is the second district congressional seat being vacated by Rep. Capito to run for the Senate. Numerous candidates have lined to run for the seat, and thus far, we provided surveys to interested candidates willing to share their position on issues affecting credit unions. To date, we have not endorsed a candidate for the second congressional district, but are carefully reviewing the completed surveys to see to what degree they align with our credit union philosophy and values.
Wisconsin's Credit Union Activists are informed and will be fully engaged in the 2014 elections. WI Activists, League staff and System Partners will participate in elections at all levels of government. Local races are the spring board for higher office and frequently local and state officials move up to federal positions. Therefore, WI Activists share the value and impact of credit unions in communities across the state with candidates for public office early in their careers.
In addition, we prepare candidate surveys for both state and federal candidates. Those surveys are then made available for our Activists to review when deciding who they are going to support.
The league has a dedicated webpage for elected officials and those seeking office that describes the member and community contributions of credit unions through video testimonials by credit union staff and members. In addition we report the annual impact and contributions of credit unions each year in our Scorecard publication to put a fine point on credit unions' commitment to social responsibility and the massive amount of hard-earned dollars they keep in members' pockets.
The league administers a state Political Action Committee (PAC) which routinely ranks in the top five of all state PACs for campaign contributions each cycle. In addition, Wisconsin allows organizations to formally bundle individuals' contributions and write and single check to campaigns. This conduit program is used to direct significant contributions each cycle.
Wisconsin Credit Union supporters will also volunteer for and donate to campaigns and ultimately work to ensure pro-credit union candidates are elected.